Hip-Hop Dance Showcase 'Motion/Matter' Celebrates Diversity on Stage

Published January 16, 2024

The street dance showcase 'Motion/Matter' at the Perelman Performing Arts Center brought an array of hip-hop dance styles to the limelight, concluding dramatically with an all-styles battle that paid homage to the genre's origins.

A Cultural Blend of Dance Heritage

Hip-hop dance has come a long way over five decades, with its many forms reaching global popularity. Yet, conveying the raw spirit of hip-hop on a theatrical stage can be challenging. The Perelman Performing Arts Center recently hosted 'Motion/Matter,' a festival that featured a broad spectrum of street dance, highlighting artists from across the globe and culminating in an explosive dance battle.

Vivid Performances Bridging Continents

The festival began with 'Afrikan Party' by Supa Rich Kids, showcasing a high-energy performance. Despite some ambiguous thematical expressions, their dance was a mix of humor and battle influenced by traditional African motifs. This was followed by 'BreAking' from the Korea National Contemporary Dance Company, which presented its performers navigating through barriers both literal and metaphorical, engaging in a celebration of free expression post-obstacle.

From Storytelling to Celebratory Battles

Another notable performance was 'The Barefoot Diva,' a work by French choreographer Nicolas Huchard, which paid tribute to the power and grace of female dancers. Meanwhile, 'P is for Pop D is for Dip' by New York vogue artist Kia LaBeija, although more subtle and personal, fell short in delivering a heightened theatrical experience.

The Climactic Battle of Styles

The festival's highlight was the all-styles dance battle, where dance warriors competed in high-stakes duels of creativity and prowess, led by MC Cebo and DJ Bizzy. The event saw seasoned judges, including B-boy legend Ken Swift and Rennie Harris, demonstrate why they are revered in the dance community, showcasing not just dance technique, but emotional storytelling and raw expression through movement.

festival, hip-hop, diversity