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Everyone who is interested in the culture of hip hop is welcome to join our group and help enhance our experience. Our goal as a group is to ensure everyone has a break through in their lives before July 16th. We are also determined that each and every participant engrains this buddhism in their everyday life and develops a deeper understanding of our practice through building their own actual proof. Contact Cynthia Peacock

First Rehearsal for Hip-Hop Dance Battle

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By Peggy Chen/ Sunday, April 23rd, 2006 / New York Culture Center

The elevator stopped and the doors opened. The room in front of me overflowed with teenagers and loud, thumping music. It was about 12 noon on Sunday, April 23rd, and the atmosphere in room 303 at the New York Culture Center was chaotic - but fun. It was the first day of rehearsal towards the youth festival on July 16th for the hip-hop dance battle group.

Approximately 15 girls had made a circle and took turns dancing in the center while their friends cheered on. Ten other teenagers, mostly boys from the other battle sub-groups (break dance, DJ, and MC) were spread out on the chairs and carpeted floor. Some even sat in the doorway of the room. It's too hot in there, said Lawrence Valdez, fanning himself. Lawrence is 15-years-old and leads the break dancing group in Long Island Queens Region.

Apparently, the actual rehearsal had taken place, because 10 minutes after I arrived, it ended. Cynthia Peacock, who is overseeing the “hip-hop battle group as well as the dance sub-group recapped the hip-hop dance steps they had learned that day, and thanked everyone for coming before directing them downstairs for the general wrap-up with the other performance groups.

I caught up with Cynthia afterwards and asked about the group's vision for its performance at the youth festival. She said that the idea is for each of the battle sections to have intra-group competitions or “battles.” For example, DJs (led by Markus Hardina) would try to outdo one another, while MCs or, rappers, (led by Mike Jeter) would attempt to upstage their peers.

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Journal 1 (April 23)
Journal 2 (May 14)
Journal 3 (May 21)
Journal 4 (June 11)
Journal 5 (June 18)
Journal 6 (June 25)
Journal 7 (July 1st)
July 8th & 9th
July 15th
July 16th

African Performance
Asian Performance
Brazilian Capoeira
Hip Hop (Dance Battle)
Hip Hop (DJ Battle)
Hip Hop (MC Battle)
Latin Dance
YMD Athletics
Youth Band
Youth Chorus
YWD Dance

Art Committee
Byakuren, Soka, Gajokai
Documentary Committee
Lunch Committee
Promotional Committee

April 23rd
May 14th
May 21st
June 11th
June 18th
June 25th (Teens)
June 25th
July 1st (Teens)
July 8th & 9th
July 15th