[Hip Hop Dance: Exploring the Groove and the Movement Beneath and Beyond the Beat]

TDM 149U
Aysha Upchurch
2019 Fall
Wednesdays, 9:45-11:45am
Location: Farkas Studio 303
Class Capacity: 20  Consent Required: Instructor


Having sprawled so far from its geographical roots, Hip Hop music and dance can be seen, taught, and learned in almost every corner of the globe.  Indeed this kind of reach hints at a certain inclusivity or open invitation to all -- there seems to be no body that has not seen or even participated in some moment with Hip Hop dance.  True to the essence of Hip Hop culture, the dance form continues to define and stretch itself -- sampling and remixing how and where it moves.  Yet with all of this expansion, it is important to honor its roots and history -- there is a method to the madness, a rhyme and a reason behind the swag.

This new course will offer students an opportunity to explore the history and technique behind the dance form and culture called Hip Hop.  As a studio experience, we will learn techniques from the different foundation forms of the dance -- breaking, popping, locking -- while also exploring choreography and new and old party dances that point to the groove that defines Hip Hop dance.  The class is primarily a movement experience, yet we will ground our learning by honoring the historical grounding and criticality necessary to learn and appreciate the art form and culture responsibly. Through movement explorations, discussions, short readings and film viewings, and engagement with guest lecturers, we will come to understand Hip Hop’s power as a critical pedagogy and still have the requisite fun that come with Hip Hop dance.