Friday, February 27, 2009

ABDC Finals: Hip Hop Decathlon

Its the next-to-the-last episode of America's Best Dance Crew. This week the final three groups were challenged to a decathlon of hip hop styles and steps. They each had to incorporate house and crump style while performing waves, threading, and tutting. Since I know so little about hip hop history, I personally found this challenge illuminating.

Beat Freaks opened with an excellent routine: tight synchrony, great formations, dynamic changes. Unfortunately, once Quest Crew finished dancing, it was all over.

This was some of the best contemporary dance choreography I’ve ever seen and QC performed to perfection. It finished with one dancer doing a back flip from sitting to standing! No hands! It was astonishing. Even their final number, OrQuestra, which featured head spins on the top of a grand piano while another dancer played it, was brilliant. Congratulations, Quest Crew. Right from the beginning, you stood above the other groups. Heck, I’ve been cheering for Hoc since his first appearance on SYTYCD!

Tune in next week for the big finale. They’re bring all the crews back.

Postscript: I can never resist passing on these cultural nuggets: Shane Sparks was complementary of Beat Freaks “King Tut” section. Stacked in one ascending line front to back, they wave the arms on either side creating the look of a multi-armed goddess. But the image is not Egyptian; it is decidedly Hindu. I pulled out my reference books and could only find one, six- to eight-armed Hindu goddess: Durga. She’s an insubordinate warrior goddess, protectress of the cosmos, slaughtering demons and answering to no man, human or god. Her potency is not for nurturing but for doing battle. She’s a perfect model for hip hop women. They should name the step after her.

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