High-powered blend of styles
What began as a group of high school boys just ‘‘doing their thing’’ is now a dance sensation merging very different cultures.
The 50/50 Dance Crew mixes hip-hop with Bollywood and the more traditional Bhagra dance style.
It’s proving popular and the 16-member crew made it to the semi-final of this year’s season of New Zealand’s Got Talent.
On December 14 they’ll be showing off their unique flavour in the central city during the 12 Days of Christmas Carnival.
50/50 Dance Crew started out performing just Indian style dances at Mt Roskill Grammar School in 2006.
‘‘It’s where we discovered our passion for dance and thought ‘this is more than just for fun and we might have the talent to take it further’,’’ member Rahul Chopra says.
‘‘Members were interested in the culture of hip-hop based on what they’d learned growing up in New Zealand. It’s how we came up with the name 50/50.
‘‘In the beginning people were sceptical.
‘‘They thought it’s not really who we are, and they’re right we’re not professional hip-hop dancers.
‘‘It was mostly the older generation who weren’t sure but I think it’s because they couldn’t imagine what hip- hop is,’’ Mr Chopra says.
Most of the group are university students. A few are training to be doctors and engineers and Mr Chopra is studying for an MBA.
A couple of members have given up their day jobs to take up dancing full-time.
New Zealand’s Got Talent was the first mainstream show they performed.
‘‘We’d been doing a lot of shows but never mainstream ones, we were surprised at how much people loved it,’’ he says.
During the New Zealand’s Got Talent competition they held dance workshops around the country.
Most of those who turned up to learn weren’t Indian, Mr Chopra says.
‘‘Kiwis pretty much love it. I would say they love it more than Indian people do, we didn’t expect that.’’
Next up the group would like to make a music video, Mr Chopra says.
Multi talented: ‘‘Kiwis pretty much love it,’’ crew member Rahul Chopra says. Go to centralleader. co.nz and click on Latest Edition to watch the 50/50 Dance Crew perform.
Fusion: The 50/50 Dance Crew are making waves with their blend of hip-hop, Bollywood, and Bhagra.