Hip Hop Culture is commonly recognized by its main elements: Graffiti, Djing, Break dancing (B-boying), Mcing (Rapping), and Beatboxing. However, these elements are simply forms of art designed to express a deeper meaning. At its core, Hip Hop is so much more than mere art and entertainment. Hip Hop is the constantly evolving spirit and consciousness of urban youth that keeps recreating itself in a never-ending cycle. It is joy, sorrow, pleasure, pain, victory, defeat, anger, happiness, confusion, clarity, humor, intensity, dream, nightmare, life, death, and everything else in between. It is the spirit that connects the past to the present and lays a path towards the future. The spirit of Hip Hop is the same as Jazz, Reggae, Blues, Doo-wop, Be-bop, and a multitude of other types of expressions, be it musical or otherwise, that African people throughout the Diaspora have given birth to and introduced to the world. That
very spirit is what breathes life into a simple idea and transforms it into a living cultural movement. Hip Hop Culture cannot be assimilated, integrated, diluted, watered-down, sold for profit, or pimped. It will always exist, in this incarnation or another.
Hip hop dancing is thought to have officially begun in New York City during the late 1960s and early 70s. During this time, individuals without professional dance training but with a natural instinct for movement brought dancing to the streets. Hip hop moves were inspired by complex rhythms and the down-to-earth movement style of African dancing. It originally was a creative expression of the suburban African-American and Hispanic-American communities but gradually spread across communities, regions and countries and is now popular among dance enthusiasts around the world.
Hip Hop music began when DJs started experimenting with rhythmic beats in loops, then with rap vocals, hard hitting lyrics and beat boxing. All this accompanied with deep bass, innovative guitar strumming and high end sound effects. While this new kind of music was gaining acceptance and popularity, particular complimentary styles of dressing, dance and art were also making way into the lives of fans. Music and movement came together to form a new art. This is how Hip Hop as a dance form and Graffiti as an art form came into being. Today, music, dance and graffiti, all are essentials part of the Hip Hop culture.
Hip-Hop is the dance you often see in music video clips today. Hip-Hop is a broad collection of urban street dance styles including Breaking, Popping, Locking, Turfing, Jerkin and Krumping. Hip-Hop dancing evolved from Hip-Hop culture and includes elements from Jazz, Rock, Tap, American and Latino dance cultures. It is a very energetic form of dance that can be choreographed or improvised. Hip-hop looks great, looks fun, and the more you watch, the more you want to do it! It might look too hard to do—but it’s not!
Given its humble beginnings as a street dance, hip hop has become increasingly popular in the past two decades. Thanks to irresistible rhythms and eye-catching steps that break many of the conventions of classical dance, hip hop has caught the attention of the modern public. Hip hop started on the streets in some of the United States' ghettos, and has made its way to illustrious performance venues across the globe. In a short period of time, hip hop has carved a substantial chunk of dance culture out for itself, and dance lovers celebrate the innovative nature of hip hop choreography and style.
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