A Mumbai hip-hop crew is all set to make a mark at the Hip-Hop International dance championship and needs funds to reach the stage of their dreams.
They say “Any Body Can Dance”, but not everybody gets selected to represent their country at the prestigious International Hip Hop Championship. The dream-city Las Vegas hosts one of the premier Hip Hop dance competitions. Here, crews from over 50 countries butt their heads and legs to take home the Championship trophy. To dance on this dais is a dancer’s dream come true.
The World Hip Hop Dance Championship is part of the Hip Hop International organisation. It is one of the world’s leading dance organisations which also hosts a series of other street dance competitions that are judged internationally. This seven-day-long event is not only about the contest, but it is also a podium where the dozens of street-dancers teach and display their techniques.
Organisers of Hip Hop International believe that there is no one definition of Hip Hop Dance. Originating from the street dance routine, the dance form is a fusion of street dance and cultural interpretations. It is a constantly evolving art form that should capture the music, attitude, posture, and the look of the Hip Hop culture. For dance rookies, it is a western dance form that was epitomised by the Step up movies. Talented Indian choreographers Prabhu Deva and Remo D’Souza have set the mark for Indian dancers.
The countdown for HHI-2016, Las Vegas has already begun. The contest that began in 2002 has seen a constant increase in the number of participating countries and contestants. With over 3000 participants from all over the world, this event has given a platform for dancers to get their skills assessed on the international plinth. It is not an easy feat to even qualify for this competition and has left quite a few feet sore to get the right moves. Dancers from all over the world are gearing up for the ultimate showdown which is set to begin on August 8th, 2016.
This is where the real Step up happens! Pure talent is put to the test, and only the best get selected to showcase their flair. The dancers have to showcase some unique Hip Hop moves and demonstrate a variety of street dance styles without regressing into displaying gymnastics and stunts. And one crew amongst the qualifying teams from India who kept pace with these elevated selection criteria is a team from the City of Dreams – Mumbai. The “Hypnotics” as these young boys call themselves, won the silver medal at the Indian Hip Hop Dance Championship. This group of 8 young dancers led by Harish Patil is now gearing up to match steps at the World Hip Hop Championship, 2016.
Their journey of winning accolades had begun long back. The crew was formed in 2009, and they set a mark by taking the crown at a Mumbai dance festival in 2010 called the Mulund Fest. They wooed the crowd in the top-rated Indian reality show ‘Entertainment Ke Liye Kuch Bhi Karega’ and went on to win the gold medal in the National Level Hip Hop championship in 2013. At the Hip Hop Unite World Championship hosted in Serbia, they placed 10th. They have made guest appearances in many events such as Wassup Andheri, Malhar Fest-St.Xavier’s College, Melvin Louis’ Three, Umang Fest-Jai Hind College. The leading clothing brand, Raymond invited them to perform at their annual function. Choreographing for an Indian regional movie- Dum Asel Tar (Marathi), was another feather in their cap. They also conduct many workshops and dance shows nationwide.
Competing against 23 other teams in the Adult-crew at the Indian Hip Hop Championship, these dedicated dancers won the Silver medal. With a whopping 597 marks, they were just two points short of winning the Gold medal. Their efforts bore fruit when they earned a name in the Indian Hip Hop Championship after two struggling years of practice and perseverance.
But their struggle doesn’t stop here, nor do their dreams. When one dream came true, the means to fulfil their ultimate vision comes with a very high cost. To represent the country at the international dance competition, the team lacks the required funding. Running around for sponsorships amidst rigorous training and rehearsals has failed to raise the money required till now.
An all-inclusive trip for the 8 crew members to represent the nation at the HHI World Hip Hop Championship is a pricey 15 lakhs. Currently, the team lacks a couple of lakhs to reach the priceless grandstand and win the dream title at the Championship that is now dubbed the ‘Olympics of Dance.’
It had been a similar journey for the previous year’s Indian contenders Kings United headed by Suresh Mukund. When all the team lacked was funding to compete at the International Championship, lead Indian actor and a passionate dancer Varun Dhawan helped the crew raise the amount. With sponsorship from Ponds and the rest of the sum chipped in by himself, the actor ensured that the dream of these talented dancers doesn’t get shattered. And one helping hand piloted the journey for them to win the bronze at the International Hip Hop Championship.
History is repeating itself because the Hypnotics crew are facing financial issues just like the former contenders. Their talent will be globally recognised only if they manage to raise the remaining amount within a few days from now. Yet, the lack of funds has not deterred these gifted dancers’ spirits. The crew continues their rigorous training with hopes that their sincerity, commitment, and dedication will eventually bear fruit.
Melvin Louis, a contestant of Indian reality show Dance India Dance, and owner of Dance Inc., Mumbai, has already funded part of their expenses. But the struggle goes on and so does the crew’s preparations. Promising to come up with some unique, surprising moves, the crew remains undeterred. The aim is to get the Gold at the International Championship, and they hope to leave no stone unturned to represent their country at this prestigious international dance tournament. DreamWallets has also decided to join forces to raise money for these young visionaries.
All of us can certainly be a strong pillar of support and spread their cause if we cannot provide monetary assistance. True to their name, they are intent on hypnotising the audience and judges with their signature moves. Dance Hypnotics! The World is your Stage!