Hip Hop Dance Crews Fight For World Champs

By Talisa Kupenga

Hip-hop dancers from throughout Aotearoa are in Auckland to battle it out at the 10th New Zealand Street Dance Hip Hop Championships. One thousand dancers from 90 dance crews are vying for positions in America at the World Hip Hop Championships this August.

New Zealand's top dancers show their best moves.

"A lot of our crews have stepped up from last year not only as dancers but as people and just really excited to see people get on stage," says IDentity Dance Company choreographer Chevrolet 'Chevy' Mikaere.

The dancers are influenced by their tutor's style.

"Majority of the ID Co-choreographers are male and that transfers into our dance.
“We're more masculine dancers," he says.

Last year's winners, IDentity Dance Company's  'The Bradas' will take the stage tomorrow night.

Mikaere says “They're just young fit men and just really tidy dancers. They can trick they can all do backflips so it's like they got a good thing going at the moment."

Regional qualifying competitions were held over the past three months. Finalists here are fighting for positions to compete against 64 other countries at the World Hip Hop Competition in Las Vegas.

Head Judge Stephen Gray says, "What teams do to stand out, to the panel and myself, again the creativity.

“Sometimes we see a lot of teams showcasing a lot of cookie cutter routines or things that have been done before so we're looking for uniqueness."

Tonight the Mega Schools and Mega Crews compete in the preliminary rounds. Tomorrow the winners will be announced.