Nottingham’s Royal Concert Hall plays host to one of the country’s biggest dance meet-ups this week as Breakin’ Convention makes a return to the city.
Acts come from as far away as South Africa and South Korea to join local acts on stage at one of the city’s biggest venues, but it’s not just the performances that the crowd floods to see.
The Breakin’ Convention team completely transforms the 4-storey foyer, with DIY graffiti workshops, hip-hop artwork and DJ sets, as well as the chance to show some moves yourself in open dancefloor sessions.
Who to see at Breakin’ Convention in Nottingham?!
Beat Bots (UK)
James and Paige (UK)
Soweto Skeleton Movers (South Africa)
Take 1 Dance (UK)
Tentacle Tribe (Canada)
Tai and Trix (UK)
Jamal Sterrett (UK)
Gareth Woodward (UK)
Just Dance (South Korea)
The astounding popularity of these open dancefloors – known as a “Cypher”- just shows how the hip-hop dance movement has exploded in the city of Nottingham.
Born in the Bronx, New York, nearly 50 years ago, hip-hop dance has shown a rapid growth in popularity across the pond in recent years, thanks in part to the growth of the music industry and exposure to acts such as Britain’s Got Talent sensations Diversity and Twist&Pulse.
And Nottingham, well known as a hub for breakthrough movements and crazes, has once again not been left behind.
Young people from all over the city are getting involved in the sensation, and at Nottingham Trent University, street dance crew Funky Fresh Collective have seen a sudden influx of members.
“This year we’ve more than doubled in size – we’ve had more than 30 new members’, says FFC President Eve Silveston Maxey.
‘That’s more than we’ve ever had, and it was enough to create an entirely new dance squad!”
I think people are attracted to us because they see us and we just have fun!
Shomari perry, street dancer
The society’s growth has seen them nominated for the University’s Society of the Year award for a third straight year, winning the accolade in 2015, and the 2017 trophy would join that of dance competitions from Loughbrough and Birmingham.
The Collective hold open jam sessions at Spanky van Dyke’s Bar in the city centre every week, just around the corner from where Breakin’ Convention takes place this week, with a specific emphasis on encouraging new or less confident members.
And 2017-2018 President Shomari Perry has a very clear message for those who could be interested in joining in:
“Just jump right in!”, he says.
‘We’d never throw you in at the deep end of the pool, but we’re not going to hold your hand!’
‘I think people are so attracted to FFC because they see us and we just have fun!”
Watch: Funky Fresh Presidents Eve & Shomari talk Street Dancing in Nottingham:
Breakin’ Convention is in town until the end of the week, while Funky Fresh’s jam sessions are open from 2pm every Wednesday.