Hip-hop se­niors take to the stage

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS -

Hip-hop’s old­est dance troupe is hop­ing to take on the world at the World Hip Hop Cham­pi­onships in Las Ve­gas but not be­fore show­ing Auck­lan­ders their moves first.

The Hip Op-er­a­tion Crew, once known as The World’s Old­est Flash Mob, is now an of­fi­cial hip-hop dance troupe with mem­bers aged be­tween 66 and 96.

The crew is set to com­pete at the New Zealand Na­tional Street Dance Cham­pi­onships in Free­mans Bay on April 26.

They will go head to head with the best mega crews from around the coun­try be­fore per­form­ing a spe­cial trib­ute per­for­mance at the cham­pi­onships on April 27.

The group, from Wai­heke Is­land, formed last year stag­ing flash mob per­for­mances across Auck­land.

Some per­form with zim­mer frames, walking sticks and wheel­chairs and one mem­ber is legally blind.

But noth­ing stops them from strut­ting their stuff.

Crew man­ager Bil­lie Jor­dan re­cruited se­nior ci­ti­zens from across Wai­heke Is­land to the group to re­duce the stigma of age­ing and to bring the older gen­er­a­tion and youth closer to­gether.

The re­sponse to the group from the hip-hop com­mu­nity has been amaz­ing, Ms Jor­dan says.

‘‘They have brought the crew to tears with hap­pi­ness.

‘‘As many of their aged friends don’t really sup­port them in their mis­sion to be­come le­git­i­mate hip-hop dancers it’s great they can get that sup­port and en­cour­age­ment from the hip-hop com­mu­nity.’’

The aim of the crew is to show re­spect to young peo­ple and in­spire them to achieve their dreams, she says.

Af­ter the na­tional cham­pi­onships the group hopes the or­gan­is­ers of the World Hip Hop Dance Cham­pi­onships will in­vite them to per­form at the com­pe­ti­tion in Las Ve­gas in Au­gust.

‘‘For many mem­bers of the crew it would be their last hur­rah in this life,’’ Ms Jor­dan says.

The New Zealand Na­tional Street Dance Cham­pi­onships run at the Vic­tory Con­ven­tion Cen­tre, Free­mans Bay, from April 25 to 27.

Go to auck­land­c­i­ty­har­bour news.co.nz to watch the Hip Op-er­a­tion Crew per­form at the Auck­land Re­gional Hip Hop Cham­pi­onships on March 23.

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