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Join artist Angela Gladue for a study of powwow and hip-hop dance. Angela will guide you through
three units: hip hop basics, powwow basics
and an original choreography
that combines the two styles.
The first PDF linked below will help dancers track their progress through the movements. The second PDF includes reflection prompts.
Movement Checklists Video Reflection
1. The Bounce
Start by learning the basic bounce. This foundational movement will help you keep the beat and move with style. As you get the feel of the bounce, learn how to layer in your footwork and upper body to groove in your own freestyle.
2. The Rock
Now that you’ve learned the up and down motion of the bounce, learn the forward and back motion of the rock. Add in footwork like the outlaw step and the grapevine.
Did you know that a lot of hand movements in hip-hop are inspired by the gestures MCs would use while rapping? Use these hand gestures to add meaning and story to your movement. You can also try using angles to add emphasis.
4. Party Dances 1
Did you know that a lot of hip-hop moves were originally done at parties in big groups before ever being done on the stage or in music videos? Learn the first three party dances: the Prep, the Biz Markee, and the Bart Simpson.
5. Party Dances 2
Learn the next set of party dances: the Gucci, the Rambo, and the Humpty Dance. Can you think of any party dances that are popular today?
6. Free Style
Now it’s time for you to improvise. Use all of the movements and tools you’ve learned and put them together in your own unique way.
1. Basic step
Get started by learning the basic step. This foundational movement will help you find the beat. Imagine your floor is like the drum as you tap your feet in front of you. Then, build on the basic step by practicing it with a bounce and travelling.
Now that you know the basic step, take it further by learning some different footwork variations. Make sure to balance out your movements by repeating everything on both sides.
Did you know that almost all powwow dances travel in a clockwise direction? Use some of the footwork you already know to move through space.
4. Turns and Spins
After practicing all the different footwork variations, explore turning and spinning as you move through space. Learn to spot your head so you don’t get too dizzy.
Learn the step that mimics the movements of the crow. Move your feet with a downward emphasis as you weave in and out of your path.
Check out these bonus videos to learn more about some different ways that the music influences the movement of powwow dancers.
1. Crowhop Challenge - Part 1
Now that you’ve learned the powwow and hip-hop movements, follow along with Angela as she puts them together in the first half of the choreography.
2. Crowhop Challenge - Part 2
Once you’ve practiced the first half of the choreography and you feel comfortable with the movements, Angela will lead you through the rest.
3. Crowhop Challenge - Full Dance
Congratulations on completing all the choreography! Use this video to continue practicing until you feel like you can move through the whole piece without Angela’s help.