A weekend of Hip hop transforms the ambience of Sadler’s Wells once every year since 2004. This year was no exception. Started by Jonz D in association with Sadler’s Wells, Breakin Convention, is an international festival of Hip hop Dance theatre and a tribute to popular youth culture of today. It has incubated many Hip hop artistes helping them onto the stepping stones of success and stardom in their careers.
In keeping with the informal street origins of this dance form, every attempt is made to create a lighter atmosphere. The front rows of the house are removed to make room for a free standing audience – those who cannot help swaying to the music. This gives a complete night out feel with dance that throws out sheer energy.
This year’s presentation took place over the weekend of 4th March. There was a big line up of Hip hop groups and solo performers from across the country and also from outside the UK. Companies like Avant Garde Dance, Boy Blue Entertainment, Compagnie Revolution, Grounded, Jukebox Collective and many others were amongst the UK based groups. On the other hand Project Soul Collective from Korea, Next Level Squad from USA and Zamounda from France were the visiting groups. Each performance brought with them something new to wow the audience.
Comprising of an international cast of five differently-abled dancers- the Ill abilities crew is amazing. All of them have overcome a disability to become winners on stage and in life. Sergio Carvajal, Redouan Ait Chitt, Tommy Ly, Jacob Lyonsand and Puca Patuelli have used the freedom of movement and choreography to transform their insecurities, doubts and adversities into determination and power to take them forward in life. Their performance takes the audience on a journey through their minds in a unique language of dance. A very emotional piece that brings the audience to their feet at the end.
A review of this festival will not be complete without the mention of the “10Tens” choreographed by Vicky Mantey and Bruno Perrier. This is a special presentation to celebrate the 10th anniversary where 10 budding ten year old Hip hop dancers are brought together from across the country to perform this special piece to celebrate the occasion.
Breakin Convention is an electric celebration of a dance form that grew out of a popular street culture. It focusses on celebrating popular urban youth culture. Its success lies in its effortless mixing of an informal night-out feel with a formal stage performance.