True headz are undoubtedly aware that hip-hop culture is about more than just rapping -- it actually consists of four other "elements": graffiti, DJing, beatboxing and breakdancing. So it should come as no surprise that a righteous and down festival like A3C would throw a spotlight on the art of breaking with two distinct events.
First, on Fri., March 31, the indie fest hosts "We B Girlz" -- a panel discussion focusing on female B-girls and women involved in other areas of hip-hop. The panel's concept is gleaned from the book We B Girlz, about lady breakers of the 21st century, by author Nika Kramer and photographer Martha Cooper. Cooper, also co-author of the New York graffiti history, Subway Art, is scheduled to serve as a panelist at the event, joined by notables such as dancer/choreographer Anita "Rocafella" Garciao, and rapper/bassist MC Divinty, among many others.
Once the talking is done, B-girls and B-boys will assemble Sat., April 1, to battle for dance supremacy at "Skill 4 Sole." The brainchild of dancer Quic, leader of the ATL Funklordz, and judged by Alien Ness of the Zulu Nation, Skill 4 Sole is a daylong, two-on-two breakdance challenge. And according to A3C organizer Kevin Elphick, it should not be confused with You Got Served.
"The first prize is $500, and the second prize is the loser's shoes," says Elphick. "It's like back in the day, cats would battle for crew jackets. It wasn't about money. It was about clout."
Elphick adds that the inspiration to mount A3C's two-day homage to dance, besides sheer fun, comes from the need to represent hip-hop as a whole.
"First off, it's just effin' dope, man. And then secondly, it's a celebration of hip-hop as a culture," he says. "I know a lot of cats on the conscious or indie tip tend to overwork the whole 'elements' thing, but I mean it's true."
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