Our dance scene is so invigorating and ever evolving that during the past few years we have achieved so many advancements.
We have created so many opportunities to generate streams of income ranging from theater shows, battles, show cases and even teaching.
I know that this is a controversial topic but this is off my own opinion about the direction the dance scene is heading towards.
The purpose of this article is to unite and educate the scene rather than mislead.
We have explored and learnt almost every aspect there is about dance. We have utilised many marketing platforms to spread our culture upon that we have now started to realise the true value of what we do and adopted the business mindset needed to gain credit and professional respect to survive in a society that tells us to conform to the norm.
But looking at our status I must ask, have we lost the notion of just having fun? Does the money and fame seem all that more important than simply just having fun? Is that not why we fell in love with this craft in the first place?
I’ve seen more marketing on social media that’s used more for self-promotion rather than carrying the deeper meaning behind the craft that we love.
Never carrying the message along to the masses, corporates and sponsors that there is access to a large network of alternative Hip Hop entertainment other than rap music that has been in around South Africa since the eighties.
I’ll give you another example, what about dancers that prioritise taking part in shows but never pitching up to community events that will help build and grow the scene or how about dancers that support only their dance style but fail to support other styles too?
Can the term SELL OUT be used to describe dancers that partake in only one main event for the entire year and hereafter only do shows for money?
Has the SA B-boy really SOLD OUT because he/she chooses to only do shows because it’s lucrative?
I would like to enlighten everyone that by supporting smaller events not only helps to grow the scene as a whole but prompts other event organizers to birth new events during the course of the year.
Have we entered an era in dancing whereby we have forgotten that we started this for the love of Hip Hop and somehow got caught up with money and fame? Is this a trend we see in our community?
With the likes of so many international dance movies, does this spread a positive message to the next generation that dancing is only about being famous and making money?
What about the love? History? Artistic nature of dance, the spirit of humbleness and great music?
Now while it’s easy to blatantly blame greed for these alarming issues we too need to be careful in been labelled ignorant.
We all know that any dancer can pursue whatever avenue he/she desires, but understanding the pros and cons to each may lead us to discover a probable solution.
Perhaps pursuing dance in the performance and show side may influence the training schedule or timeframe for a dancer to prepare for a competition. This could lead the dancer to believe that entering a competition is not worthwhile and they end up not attending the event at all.
Or perhaps training exclusively for battles may affect a dancer’s ability to absorb other dance styles. This could make the dancer not want to even explore that avenue of dance also resulting in not supporting other events.
Whatever it may be are these the reasons that dance has become the pursuit of making money rather than supporting growth? If we really want to grow the scene, isn’t it crucial to support all aspects of dance?
Are we too just exploiting dance in our own way just to make money but forgetting not too long ago we were being exploited for our talents?
Whatever it is …… YOU DECIDE!