Dancer invited to Hollywood academy
Talented Taupo hip-hop dancer Larissa Murphy has scored a place in a Hollywood dance school.
But that hasn’t stopped her helping to train the next generation of dancers at her old college.
In 2016, Murphy led Tauhara College’s dance crew, the Young Queens, to the country’s top dance competition – the Dance NZ Made nationals.
The Young Queenz placed second with their Polyswagg-style hip hop performance.
The 18-year-old’s journey at the International Dance Academy [IDA] will start in September 2018.
‘‘At the IDA, I’ll spend three months training in Hollywood, then 7 months in Copenhagen,’’ Murphy said.
In the meantime, Murphy is running tutorials in Taupo and training the next generation of dancers.
Jacinda Wilson, Tauhara College dance teacher, said Murphy had joined the school staff as a tutor.
‘‘We’ve got this whole new group of young girls who want to be like Larissa,’’ Wilson said.
’’She’s left the legacy of Young Queens, but we’ve now got a new [dance] crew called Solace.’’
Wilson said a huge number of students auditioned for Solace, but she and Murphy whittled the selection down to 10 students.
‘‘The plan is for Larissa and myself to lead Solace throughout the year and give them the same experience as the Young Queenz, which was quite life-changing for them.’’
The Young Queenz’ main influence was polyswagg – a hip hop dance style created by Parris Goebels, leader of world famous dance crew the Royal Family, Wilson said.
In 2017, Solace dancers were being trained to show off a greater variety of styles, she said.
‘‘The Young Queenz were interesting and really unique, but this is a step up again.’’
Krump, isolations, old skool, new school, vogue-ing, and Reggaeton were all part of the dance playlist, she said.
Murphy regularly travels to Auckland to train with Notorious dance company. She said she was excited to take Solace to PROJECT dance competition in Mt Maunganui over Queen’s Birthday Weekend.
‘‘Young Queenz came third at Project last year. So we’ll be pushing them to get first place.’’
Larissa Murphy (left), pictured with Jacinda Wilson, tutors at her old college and trains with Auckland dance company Notorious.