At heart, dance is all about expression, and Andrei Dupra gets it. His bboy-infused yet Hip Hop style has earned a reputation for delivering exciting powerhouse performances to those of all dance backgrounds and interest.
“I would be lying if I said Hip Hop dancing was just a hobby,” Dupra stated, “it’s more than that, it’s a way of life. I live with it, as I live with air to breath. I do it whenever and wherever.”
On Monday night in Milliken Auditorium located at Northwestern Michigan College, the Manila native, with his classmates and Hip Hop instructor, Joedy Annis, present ‘Turn up the Music,’ a free demonstration at 7:30 p.m.
Sitting in on a very important last class, before the big show, Joedy Annis, a full-time mom and Nurse at Munson, eloquently showed students about dance as a language, using rich metaphors and underscoring the importance of the arts for connecting with people.
Hip Hop dance refers to social or choreographed dance styles primarily danced to Hip Hop music, such as Notorious B.I.G also known as “Biggie Smalls,” Eminem and Lauryn Hill, or that have evolved as part of Hip Hop culture.
“Without music, I think Hip Hop would miss its other half, to form as a whole,” Dupra stated.
Hip-Hop culture includes a wide range of styles, but notably, break dancing and locking and popping, which were developed in the 1970’s by Black and Latino Americans.
“Hip Hop dance is movement to Hip Hop music,” Annis stated, “It allows an individual to create their personal swagger.”
At NMC, Annis teaches students how to develop their own rhythm and put their twist on the steps to create “hip hop.”
NMC’s Hip Hop crew has been on the scene for ten years, creating easy-to-learn choreography and freestyle movements.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing a lot of people come and watch us perform so we can inspire them,” Dupra stated, “especially young kids, because I don’t think this town has truly appreciated or embraced dancing, especially Hip Hop.”
The work consists of a group piece, as a whole, and individual pieces, as students were allowed to choose whether they wanted to perform on their own or in a small two-to-three person group.
The best way to connect to audiences is the ability to make them feel that they’re a part of what’s going on – that they can identify what’s going on and not feel alienated from what’s happening onstage.
“The audience should be prepared for the art of Hip Hop bringing people together, having fun and learning,” Dupra stated.
Hip Hop with Joedy Annis is offered as both a credited course and non-credited course through Northwestern Michigan College’s Physical Education Department (credit) and Extended Education (no credit).
Dancers are magicians of movement.
Come out and see their tricks.