Straight outta Auckland Hip-hop

By Wepiha Te Kanawa

The 'Bring it on' hip-hop dance competition attracts some of the best secondary dancers from across the Auckland region, but the talent isn’t just limited to the stage. Some old favourites have been selected to sit on the judge’s panel this time around.

Auckland is gaining a reputation in the dance industry. Former competitor, Talanoa Fonua-Raine, now helps to run the event and says ‘Auckland has the number one dancers in the world.’

It might be all professional on the stage but behind the scenes it all about having fun.

Onyeka Arapai is a former world hip-hop dance champ, who previously competed with the 'Request Dance Crew' and 'The Royal Family'. This year she is a judge.

"It makes me a little bit overwhelmed, because I started in this competition and I know exactly how all these kids are feeling" says Ms Arapai.

Many were happy to see guest performers ‘The Bradas’ who recently returned from the World Hip-hop Dance Championship in California.

Talanoa Fonua-Raine wasn’t shy when it came to talking about their success, "The hip-hop dancers who came first in the world champions and took it out in the worlds and they are ‘ex-bring it on’ competitors."

First time judge, Tiataharoa Maipi said the vibe was crazy, “There are so many kids here just to dance. It’s awesome to see."

Keep an eye out for this Waikato dancer who will feature in the New Zealand hip-hop dance film set to release this month 'Born to Dance'.

"I’m one of the main actors and it's my first time acting too. It’s based on a Māori kid who wants to hit the big time in dancing," says Mr Maipi.

For Ms Fonua-Raine it’s always been about giving them a stage, "I put this platform together just for these kids to show their raw talent of dance.

Bring It On 2015 winners come straight outta Māngere College.