My grandson dances hip hop and is in an all boys troupe at his studio. We had the pleasure of attending his winter recital which featured dancers ages 5-21 doing a variety of awe inspiring moves. I was raised with very traditional notions of Christmas dance recitals. They all involved ballet dancers in tights and tutus dancing to music from the “Nutcracker Suite.” The dances were formal, quiet and meticulously choreographed to showcase individual talent backed by carefully matched corps dancers.
Instead, hip hop gives an outlet for creative invention, incredible gymnastic feats, each dancer to shine, and unbridled energy. If you ever have a kid with an ADHD diagnosis, be assured that a hip hop dance team would be an excellent fit. While our grandson doesn’t have that label, he is very physical and very coordinated, so this type of dance is ideal.
When my daughter was in high school, she took African dance classes, backed by a drummer from Ghana. I was struck with how many moves in hip hop echo the dances she practiced then. In particular there is a fluidity in pelvis movement that seemed the same. I am pretty ignorant about the influences on hip hop moves, but the connection seemed clear as I watched.
Once again I am grateful for all the new experiences my grandchildren introduce into my life. I was wide awake after that performance. I certainly never risked falling asleep, a hazard I remember from those ballet recitals!