Last weekend people from all over the world tuned in to watch, what has been called by many as, “the best Breaking event of the year”.

To keep this post short, the level of dancing definitely surpassed all my expectations. So many surprising moments that made me jump out my chair.

This year was different in a number of ways. The qualifiers were efficient; with 3 different qualifying cyphers that managed to run on schedule (so I hear). A sum of $100 was given to the top 100 dancers from the 1vs1 qualifier. Even if someone missed out on qualifying for the top 32 battles, they’d still be awarded $100 if they placed 33rd-100th.

At the end of the 2-day event, Victor (MF Kidz, USA) won the 1vs1 battle and 7Commandoz (Hong 10, Wing, Skim) won the 3vs3. That means 7Commandoz will be competing in the 3vs3 at Freestyle Session World Finals 2015. While Victor will be competing in the 1vs1 at both Freestyle Session and Undisputed in December!

A lot of memorable battles took place. Here’s a few videos that Stance took from our time there:

Or, you can watch the livestream footage from both days and witness just how epic the event was!

 


 

Memories. That psychological way in which our brains stores and retrieves aspects of our lives and the general movement of the human race. Memory makes us. It creates and defines our personality and characteristics through what we remember subconsciously and what we choose to remember. As a person with a chaotic, hectic schedule, I can choose to remember important dates and deadlines and appointments. Alongside this I migh12087232_10206830119344783_4601373229488027015_ot not think I’m going to remember that morning that seemed average at the time, waking up, breakfast, university, and work. But it can turn into something my head can’t quite let go of. We remember faces, every face you see in a dream is a face you’ve seen before, memory is fleeting and memory is in the background. There’s no escaping memories, only ways of submerging them under the strains of day to day life.

Rachel Clarke & Hayley Graham present Memory Box as a part of Bish, Bash, Bosh at Yorkshire Dance for Light Night 2015. Featuring a performance installation made from childhood memories, this piece allowed spectators to drop in as they wish and explore at their own free will.

As you enter the back room of the second floor at Yorkshire Dance, having been there many times before, it can be said honestly that there was no able preparation for what I would see as I entered Memory Box. You are instantly bombarded with elements of colour, light, and of youthfulness. The piece is displayed like an exhibition, were audience members can wander around the space, taking in the detailed displays of the walls and the cluster of objects filling the room. I was instantly drawn to the childhood photos that were placed on the corner of the wall almost immediately after you enter. Here are photographs of the dancers from when they were young, all living very different lives in different areas of the country with different upbringings, but besides this there is one reoccurring element, joy.

It was refreshing to see a physical dance performance based around moments of happiness. Too often choreographers get caught in the negativity and troubled world that we12132436_10206830115904697_916111927141611818_o live in, but in this case these two graduates focused on a universal point of contentment. The dancers: Hayley Graham, Edenamiuki Aiguobasinmwin, Beth Ellis and Alexandra Mettam all demonstrated eternal smiles and movement which practically bounced from phrase to phrase.

There was one aspect of the piece that really struck me as point of creativity and imagination that begins in all young children. Against one side of the room there stood two tall fabric displays of a pirate and a princess. You were able to put your head through their head hole and it would appear as if you had their body. As a child this is an extremely important aspect of the pinnacle of imagination. You take your own life and let your mind wander into the wonder of fairytale. Of fighting bad guys and being rescued, of glitter and of excitement. It is those points of creativity that channel thoughts into creating such work as what I viewed tonight.

Towards the back section of the room, in a slightly more darkened corner there is a table set with party food, paper plates and party hats. Looking at this table in the context of a child’s party, you think of the frantic scrabble of children fighting for their place, fighting for their favourite colour party hat and then eating so much until the point of nausea.  But when looking at this beautifully set table surrounded by dancers who are well on their way to professional careers, you see the nostalgia of when things were this easy for them. When food was free, when plates were unbreakable and a simple coloured party hat could compliment any outfit. You see the wistfulness, longing and flicker of loved memories in their eyes. As I watch on, like a parent from the distance I think of the parties I went to as a child, and suddenly realizing the effect this piece of work has had upon me. Looking around this room I see my own childhood flicking over my eyes like a cinematic lens.

As a conclusion to my time in the Memory Box, I am left with scattered memories and thoughts of things that were seemingly evident in most childhoods across our Western Culture. It made me think about the wonderful things that I did have growing up, and even ponder the very idea of photographs, allowing us to glance back over the frozen smiles and fleeting moments. The instruments, the sound of children, the lights and how they flicker as bright as a young child’s future, are all something that resonate somewhere deep inside of ourselves.

Writing credits

Emily snow 

Young minds matter


The Silverback Open Championships are just around the corner. Taking place on October 10-11 2015. Once again, people from all over the world will travel to Pennsylvania, USA to experience an event of epic proportions.

To start, let’s recap on Stance’s experience at their first event last year.

The level of dancing was extremely high! Boasting a 1vs1 line up consisting of dancers such as Kareem, Menno, Wing, Thesis, Niek, Moy, Intact, Issei and many more world-class bboys. The 3vs3 was no different; with crews like Squadron, LOZ, Super Crew, Beast Coast and Last Samurai (Gravity, El Nino, Thesis) battling to win. Thesis took the win in the 1vs1; Squadron were victorious in the 3vs3; ABGirl won the B-Girl battle.

One of the selling points to the event is the prize money. Because this event is a product of UDEF (Urban Dance and Education Foundation), prize money is given out to everybody that qualifies from Top32 onward. With a budget of approx. $50,000 for everybody who qualifies.

This year is no different. The overall winner’s prize money, for all their battles, is standing at $90,000. Spread across a 1vs1, 3vs3 and bgirl battles. They’ve also released all the entrants for their battles. If everything goes to plan they’re going to see, in terms of number of entrants:dance level ratio, the best line up at a Breaking event ever.

Go to http://www.udeftour.org for more information on UDEF and Silverback Open Championships. We’ll be back there this year!


Who am I?

Hi! I’m Abi, a 25 year old dancer and event manger from Manchester. I run my own little company called ‘Innate Dance’, and I also run CDC (Commercial Dance Camp) alongside Studio 25, and Pilot Dance Night alongside my business partner Jack Bain. When I don’t have my head stuck behind a keyboard – I’m training, teaching, or dancing professionally as and when the jobs come about!

AbiAnneOliver

Tell us more about Innate Dance?

Innate Dance run dance events, workshops and intensives across the United Kingdom for professional and aspiring professional dancers. Innate Dance actually came about very naturally. The first workshop/event I ever hosted was Lukas McFarlane, an incredible contemporary dancer, shortly after he won Got to Dance (Sky 1).

It sold out, and was an incredibly successful day; it also was the first time that I had combined my early passion for Events Management with dance. From there, it just started to snowball, and I was running at least one event per month. When Les Twins got in touch one year later, I realised that I couldn’t just be running events as myself anymore – I needed something more official and professional, and this is how Innate was born. 2 years on, and we have been lucky enough to host some of the biggest choreographers in the world, and see dancers from across the UK and Europe travel to Manchester to attend workshops and classes.

Innate means ‘natural, inborn, a talent that is present from birth.’ All of the dancers and choreographers that we work with seem to possess this ‘Innate’ quality or talent – and that is how we found our name!

Abi and Les Twin

Who or what has inspired or influenced you throughout your journey?

The first dance company that ever truly gave me goosebumps was Boy Blue Entertainment (a Hip-Hop theatre company based in East London). I had never really seen ‘real’ Hip-Hop before, and I remember just being totally in awe, and dumbfounded as to how they could move like that as a group. That was back in 2011 at a dance competition in London called World of Dance. After that, I was hooked. Kenrick Sandy, founder of Boy Blue, continues to be one of main sources of inspiration to this day. I’ve never seen anyone else be able to achieve so much success, yet stay so grounded and so humble. He will always give you the time of day no matter what, and that is a really special thing.

Aside from that, I’m very blessed to be surrounded by some incredible and hardworking people – in dance and in business. Studio 25 (a dance studio and creative hub in central Manchester) is home to some really special people who definitely taught me how to graft! It’s not a job with us, it’s a way of life.

Why is Innate Dance different? What sets it apart?

I get asked this question a lot, especially as dance workshops and camps seem to be popping up more and more each year.

Before I formed the company, it was just me, bringing dancers who inspired me to Manchester. Screw everybody else – it was totally selfish! I wanted to learn, and sometimes I didn’t want to have to go all the way to London. For me, it was about getting the chance to take class in a more personal environment, and just hoping that other dancers would want to also. I’m a dancer first, and business woman second – and I never want to lose sight of that.

What’s next on the agenda for Innate Dance?

We are in for a BIG change – Innate Dance will be taking on Los Angeles in September. Follow us on social media to hear more about our journey!

Twitter: www.twitter.com/innatedance

Facebook: www.facebook.com/innatedanceevents

Instagram: www.instagram.com/innatedance


Everybody has their own personal reasons to engage themselves with certain hobbies. My introduction to Breaking came about through a combination of different events. To put things into perspective, my childhood was difficult. It was difficult only because I found it extremely hard to communicate with people. At that time I had a severe stutter and, as a result, grew up with incredibly low self-esteem. Was an introverted person and would need others to ask people questions, or order food for me, on my behalf. During my school years I viewed myself as inferior to others because of my stutter. This put me in a tough position to socialise. Talking to girls was out of the question; was something so far away from my reach. I needed something that would boost my confidence and help me talk to girls.

When I was 15 I was thinking hardly anything would boost my confidence. That was until a friend told me about Breaking. Said he went to a class in the city (Glasgow, Scotland) and wanted me to join him. At first I was quite scared because I’d have to talk to people. I also wanted to gather knowledge on some moves to show I wasn’t a total novice. Pretty pointless because I definitely was a novice. I decided to check it out and see what the fuss was about. Turns out that I really enjoyed it. Which was pretty spectacular given that I hardly enjoyed anything except playing video games. I continued to go to the classes for another 18 months roughly. My friend stopped going and I was unsure about going to the classes alone. But I bit the bullet and decided to carry on.

Fast forward 8 years and I’m still Breaking; developed a passion for filming dance and I’m paid to film different international events across Europe. My stutter is hardly noticeable and my communication skills have improved exponentially. The circle of friends I have include males and females spanning 6 continents. How did this happen?! Turns out that Breaking opened up a new world to me. In the space of 2 years my confidence skyrocketed and other around me were noticing. Even the girls I was too damn scared to approach started to like me. Breaking exposed me to different kinds of music; different physical exercises and it enhanced my creative thinking. Since Breaking is one aspect of Hip Hop culture I’ve been in contact with some truly fascinating people. Musicians, artists, poets, photographers – the list goes on. Now I feel a sense of belonging. Something that was difficult for me in my adolescent years. The physical, mental and emotional benefits I’ve gained are truly life changing.

Now that I’ve experienced these benefits it’s important for others to know about them too. In Glasgow there’s a small number of people that break. An even smaller number of B-Boys teach regularly. In 2013 I wanted to travel and expand my knowledge of Breaking. Doing so would help for any potential teaching work I would get involved in. My close friend Sam informed me of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. An organisation that embodies the ethos of Winston Churchill. To learn information from outside of the UK – to bring back and benefit people in the UK. They have a Travelling Fellowship scheme that allows for people to travel for up to 8 weeks to various countries. All with the purpose of learning information that can benefit and enhance people’s lives in the UK.

Chaz + Lil' Cesar

Chaz + Lil’ Cesar. Julio “Lil’ Cesar” Rivas is an original B-Boy dance pioneer. Lil’ Cesar has performed on stages all over the world, including Buckingham Palace for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Concert in 2002. He has traveled extensively across the United States and over 37 countries in Europe, Asia, and Australia, performing alongside artists such as Paul McCartney, Phil Collins, Ricky Martin, Doris Roberts, Ray Romano and Jason Alexander.

See lil Cesar in action here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pW-frEUqGE

At 21 years old I was the youngest person in 2014 to be awarded a Travelling Fellowship. Only 137 people were awarded one out of a total of 1182. When I heard I was successful, on Valentine’s Day 2014, I was overjoyed. I had to travel to London and be interviewed about my application. The interview stage was for the 256 people that were shortlisted. Flew down early morning with my dad beside me for moral support. With only 1 hour of sleep I was feeling pessimistic about the whole trip. I was forgetting what to say and was thinking this is a waste of time. When it came to the interview, everything came together and said exactly what was needed.
Nailed it!
I remember one of the interviewers walking to the bathroom and seeing me dance in the hall out of pure enjoyment for saying everything correctly.

Mijo (USA) at The Notorious IBE 2013

Chaz & Mijo (USA) at The Notorious IBE 2013

Katsu + Chaz

bboy Katsu (Japan) + Chaz

Fast forward 7 months and I was on a plane to New York. My Travelling Fellowship took me to the US for 8 weeks. To learn the positive benefits of Breaking and Hip Hop culture on young people from deprived backgrounds. I had 6 major cities to travel to: New York, Chicago, Seattle, LA, Houston and Orlando. From my knowledge these cities have some of the most influential crews and dancers in America. Hip Hop spawned from New York so it was important for me to pay dues and spend a lot of time there. During my 8 weeks I attended a few events; spoke to dancers that work within their local community; visited community centres specifically built to run Hip Hop programs and had meetings with representatives of social justice organisations.

Roxrite + Chaz

Chaz and Roxrite. Bboy Roxrite is an award-winning competitive b-boy from San Diego, California. As of August 2013, he has won 82 titles worldwide.

The whole experience was surreal! Met many inspiring dancers and was filming two of the largest Breaking events in the world – Silverback Open Championships (Philadelphia) and Freestyle Session (San Diego). I was constantly travelling and learning about different strategies to build communities with Hip Hop culture. There were some hard times that I endured through. Mainly due to a combination of missing home and undertaking a lot of work in a small space of time. On a few occasions I had no idea where I was staying in a city I was flying to in less than 24 hours. But hey, that’s the beauty of spontaneity. The whole experience was eye opening and filled my mind with an incredible amount of ideas and knowledge. I regret nothing.

Since returning home I’ve been trying to implement the knowledge and strategies I’ve learned into my local community. In the space of 7 months I’ve arranged an open dance session and, with two close friends, organised my first Breaking event – Resurgence. Two things I would have been reluctant to doing had I not carried out my Travelling Fellowship. To keep it short, the most important things I learned were:

Make Breaking accessible, consistent and cost-effective. Create as many opportunities as possible to inspire young people to engage with Breaking (and Hip Hop culture). A constant flow of classes, workshops, events and open practice sessions are the way forward. No exclusivity.

There’s many more things to be implemented in my dance scene. It will all take time and, with good networking and collaboration, I’m optimistic that Glasgow will have a thriving Breaking scene within the next 5 years.

I’ve known for a while I’ll be making a living from my passions. They keep me extremely happy and it’s a positive challenge for me. I only care for doing things that make me feel great as a person. That should be people’s motivation for pursuing their passions full-time. Even though there’s certain struggles involved, it’s working on projects you’re personally connected to. Sounds like a much happier life to me.

If you wish to learn more about Winston Churchill Memorial Trust you can check their website here: http://www.wcmt.org.uk

My final report is online and that can be viewed here: REPORT

From the events I attended, I created a few recap videos. The recap videos can be found here:

Silverback Open Championships 2014:

Freestyle Session 17:

Freestyle Session 17 – Day 1 Slow Motion:


Welcome! If you’re unsure why the title is called creative stance – let us explain: Here at Stance we film Breaking, Tricking and other cool and creative videos that take our interest. Using our recent slow-motion videos as an example, we now have a group of videos called slomo.stance. Everything that’s slow-motion has the term slomo.stance featured somewhere. Similarly to freestyle.stance which corresponds to our freestyle football videos with Waas – or any freestyle video for that matter.

Much like Hantu, Stance is also a platform for creativity and storytelling. This is exactly what you will find on here. There’s many dancers and other artists with a story to tell. A story which reveals their necessity to adopt a creative lifestyle. So in honour of the creative lifestyle, everything you will see on here will have some focus on creativity.

However, within any creative artform there’s an element of community spirit. An essence of unity and togetherness that you only find through the arts and other creative endeavours. This will also be highlighted here. Many artists put a lot of their time and effort into the growth of their community. Sharing positive vibes and encouraging others to lead a creative lifestyle. It’s important for us to recognise the hard work that creative individuals are undertaking.

So without further ado – let’s get creative!

ChazB.

Below is a playlist of slo-mo


For starters, the North Side UK works on two major principles. ‘Support Your Scene’ and ‘North Side State of Mind’. The ‘scene’ for me is my home, where I reside, where I first started my journey, where I kick started my passion. And that place is in Huddersfield in the North of England, hence the name ‘North Side UK’.

Northside Manchester Dance and Art

Some people are actually quick to up sticks and leave in search for something better, even though they had noooo idea it was under their nose the whole time, all they had to do was dig a little.

Here’s the thing, Rome wasn’t built in a day and immediate gratification is only a means to gain something quickly because your not patient enough resist the small things that enable you to accomplish a larger, more enduring reward further down the line.

Northside Manchester Dance and Art

For example, being hungry and choosing to snack instead of waiting for your mother to cook you that delicious meal to relish your need for food. This, my friends, is why I founded the North Side UK. I wanted to build the coliseum and eat that sexy ass meal. I wanted to reap my own rewards.

After only being one and a half years young (established in January 2014), the NSUK foundations are still being set and the people involved are HUNGRY! Being such a young organisation we are still experimenting with what we are capable of and are now getting an idea of how to operate, kind of like a baby learning to walk. You can say we have accomplished quite a bit already since the beginning:

– Throwing consecutive successful events

– Having events in major cities in the north of England (Leeds and Manchester)

– Releasing clothing people want to wear and support

– Collaborating with other local independent artists/clothing designers

– Releasing a project that has spanned the world from the UK to Australia

Northside Manchester Dance and Art

What we really aspire for though, are more people to join us, to share our consensus and to share our values. It’s all good saying we have done x y and z, but what the point if what we do doesn’t make a difference?

We give people a platform in which they can excel, we push them towards their own goals, we help instil growth into our scene, and we do it all for the love.

Luke Adam Mackley (North Side UK Founder & Artistic Director)

Northside Manchester Dance and Art

INFORMATION

Instagram & Twitter
@thenorthsideuk

Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/thenorthsideUK

Website
http://www.northsideuk.bigcartel.com/

Youtube
https://www.youtube.com/user/thenorthside2014

Email
the-northside@live.com

VIDEOS

NSUK 1 Year Recap

NSUK x Obsolete Collaboration

Improv Show #2 Recap

Improv Show Testimony

 

 

 


2014 was an extremely interesting year for Stance. It’s a product of old members from Strife.tv which started in April. In less than a year Stance has accumulated roughly 20,000 subscribers. To commemorate this achievement,
I (ChazB) am going to share what I believe are 6 of the top videos we’ve produced. In no particular order:

1. Thieu and Pac Pac vs Lussy Sky and Drud

 

 

Raw Circles was our first European event that we filmed that year. And this was by far the best battle of the night. For a while this was our most viewed video on Stance. In particular, the first round of Thieu’s (tall dancer on left) actually went viral on Facebook!

2. Lil’ Zoo vs Roxy

There’s something special about this video. I believe it’s the energy that the crowd is giving this battle. Anyway, this video got a lot of attention for a number of reasons. One of them being the poses Roxy would do during the battle.

3. Silverback Open Champs “Top Sets” Highlights

The name of the video gives away why I love this video. Small clips of the most amazing dance sets from the Silverback Open Champs. The event gained a lot of attention because it’s the first big event of its kind – giving away prize money to people who make Top32 onwards. So for a first event like this, it was extremely lucky that we were there to capture everything.

4. Lil’ Zoo in Seoul

Our first video to break 100,000 views! I’m going to let the video speak for itself. The moves are amazing; the mix of competition shots and outdoor shots are sweet too.

5. Lilou vs Alkolil at Red Bull BC One 2014

I believe we captured a moment that’ll be remembered for a long time to come. Not only did Lilou throw his hat at Alkolil, but also disrespected the judges. It’s the first video online to show how Lilou handled himself around the judges after the event – hence the number of views. But still, the battle was a good one!

6. Freestyle Session 2014 “Top Sets” Highlights

Currently our most viewed video. Similar to Silverback Open we uploaded just about everything we could from the event. And luckily we did. We saw some historic moments! Squadron winning 2 years in a row; Kujo from Soul Control with a memorable set and so much more.

There are so many videos that I wish to include in here. However these are 6 videos that have helped build our reputation in such a short time scale. One more honourable mention though to a video we put together at the beginning of the new year – “Elevate”.

During the Strife.tv days we would put together a portfolio video every year recapping what had been happening in the Breaking scene at that time. While some of this footage is actually ours, I feel this should be given a special mention since Stance edited the video.

Thanks for reading! You can check us out on Facebook too at http://www.facebook.com/stanceelements

Peace!