Hip-hopping to the states
Hip-hop dancing has taken Tregear’s Paul Blake further than his first love, rugby league, ever could — all the way to the US for the world championships.
A TREGEAR teenager was set on a career in rugby league when he discovered his real passion was more on the stage than the field.
Paul Blake, 16, fell in love with hip-hop dancing and after only a year of busting moves he is representing Australia at the World HipHop Dance Championships in the US this week.
His dance group The Pio- neers was selected to perform at the competition after acing state and national rounds this year.
“Rugby league was my dream my whole life until I realised my real passion was dance, and I’ve come so far,” Paul said.
“Hip-hop came naturally to me, and after watching a lot of famous hip-hop artists it kind of inspired me to become a hip-hop dancer.”
The freedom of movement he felt when dancing helped him express his emotions, Paul said.
“If I’m ever angry or sad I take it all out with dance,” he said.
“It really helps a lot instead of taking it out verbally.”
The championships, on this week in San Diego in California, attract thousands of dancers from around the world.
After making it to the championships Paul had to fundraise to pay his way to San Diego.
His family and friends banded together to bake cakes and muffins and sold them at the Western Sydney Community Markets at Mt Druitt PCYC.
“I’m grateful to them for being so supportive of me throughout the whole journey I’m trying to do,” Paul said.
His mother Charlotte said the family was overwhelmed with the support they received from the community, resulting in them raising enough to cover his trip in one day.
“It was really amazing. We were shocked because there were a lot of cake stalls there. We put a sign up that said it was to do with fundraising, and everyone was donating. They didn’t even ask for their change back,” she said.
Paul Blake, of Tregear, is competing in the hip-hop world championships.