Though the sun unforgivingly beat down on the parking lot adjacent to the Cowles Center, the location of Ground Breaker Battle 2012 (put on by the Cowles), the real heat was clearly on stage. This was the fourth installment of the annual festival, which celebrates hip hop culture - featuring breaking battles, graffiti art, and performances by local emcees. Dance + music + art + good people = somewhere I definitely want to be!
|Standings before the final round|
If you are unfamiliar with how battles work, each crew will go a certain number of "rounds," meaning a representative from each will do their thing one at a time. If you've ever seen a freestyle rap battle, it's basically the same thing, but with dance instead of words. Each dancer answers the other, showing their skill and dance vocabulary better than the opposing crew member who went before them. After the rounds are over, the judges select a winning crew who they believe displayed their skills the best.
I love breaking! Watching dancers defy gravity with the greatest of ease and the creativity with which they come up with moves in response to the music and other dancers is amazing. It makes me all types of happy.
|Local designers Matt and Chastin made an appearance at the festival, selling their custom chunky chains and rings.|
I was fortunate enough to catch the semi-finals and finals of the crew battles.
One of the reasons I enjoy this city is the arts community. There is so much talent here, I love coming out to events like this and watching it in action. Congrats to Looney Tunes and Optimistic Crew who took home 1st and 2nd place honors, respectively.
What arts communities do you take advantage of in your city?
More important question: All good breakers have an alias, what would yours be??