Under A Groove: House Dance Aesthetics with Kelsa “K-Soul” and Bravemonk // Columbia College Chicago // The Dance Presenting Series
Participants practice technique and underlying grooves associated with House dance, which grew out of the House music subculture in Chicago and New York in the early 1980s, and now widely practiced across the globe. The class reinforces hallmarks of House movement including, the physical and philosophical counter-pull of contrasting energies in the body, intricate footwork patterns and weight-shifting, polyrhythmic musicality, and freestyle (improvisation). Interspersing cultural context, both studied and from personal experience, BRAVEMONK & K-Soul build a sense of community in their classes that supports students in their practice of risk-taking and finding balance between technical training and cathartic release.
Kelsa “K-Soul” Robinson, Co-Founder/Co-Artistic Director of BraveSoul Movement, and member of the internationally known street-dance crew, Venus Fly, is a dance artist and educator who pulls from her background in community organizing, and a myriad of movement experiences including: House, Hip-Hop, and Latin social dance spaces, capoeira, samba, Dunham technique and other modern forms, and gymnastics. Kelsa has performed and presented work at the Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago, IL), B.Supreme (London, UK), B-girl Be (Minneapolis, MN), J.U.I.C.E. Hip-Hop Dance Festival (Hollywood, CA), Constellation/Links Hall (Chicago, IL) and Pritzker Pavilion (Chicago, IL). Kelsa is Assistant Professor of Instruction at The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago, Director of Columbia’s Hip-Hop Studies Minor, and Curator of The B-SERIES, a festival celebrating Hip-Hop & street dance culture. Kelsa holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a master’s degree in urban planning and policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
BRAVEMONK, a cultural ambassador and leader in the Hip-Hop community, has served both nationally and internationally as an artist, performer, educator, choreographer, host, judge and competitor over the last 18 years. BRAVEMONK is a member of Chicago’s legendary and internationally recognized breaking crew Phaze II Crosstown Crew (Est. 1982), Co-founding Director of BraveSoul Movement, a founding contributor and Co-Host of Power Style Radio, and an advisory board member of Chicago Dance History Project. BRAVEMONK’s movement vocabulary is rooted in African American urban vernacular dance forms including Breaking, Hip-Hop social dances and house. He also draws on his training in martial arts and other embodied Afro-diasporic movement languages.
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