Hip-Hop 101

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HipHop_101_16x9_620x350620x345Hip-Hop is a hugely popular type of dance involving different styles of street dance. It is very improvisational as it is made up of freestyle moves done to rap or Hip-Hop sound. There is a broad spectrum of exciting styles dating back to the 1970s, and some of the most popular moves include popping, locking and breaking. The latter was born in the Bronx, NY, and incorporated popular Latino and African-American community dances from the 1960s and early ’70s. During that period the breaking was not so much on the ground, and this only evolved with Hip-Hop. A number of Hip-Hop dance crews gained notoriety when they attracted mainstream media in films such as Wild Styles and Beat Street, as well as the legendary television program, Soul Train.

Owing to the wild response of the audience to the fun of Hip-Hop, especially from adolescents and 20-somethings living in urban neighbourhoods, dance companies as well as professionals came up with a dance studio based commercialised hip hop version named “new style,” as well as a dance fusion of jazz and hip hop named “jazz style.” These versions were quite advanced and in some ways athletic, as they had been choreographed by dancers with classical training who had made an in depth study of street Hip-Hop. So this led to two categories: wild outdoor Hip-Hop and the more refined, yet athletic, dance studio Hip-Hop.

Hip-Hop continued to be fashionable in the 1990s and in this century thanks to more movies and television programs such as the Step-Up film series, Saigon Electric, Street Dance 3D, Planet B-Boy, and the Grind. There had also been a hit web series named LXD. At the present time, Hip-Hop competitions are held in many parts of the world including Japan, Europe, Australia and of course the US.