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Eight to Go!: Youth Division gather for the second rehearsal on May 14
By Jasmina Chuck / Sunday, May 14th, 2006 / New York Culture Center

The second rehearsal for the July 16th Meeting was a show of pure, momentous energy, with every individual working hard to contribute to this history-making event. The variety of groups appeals to all interests and will become an eclectic collage that will blow the roof off of Lincoln Center. Although early in the morning on a Sunday, no one seemed tired or drained. In fact the life condition in the building just kept on rising as the day went on. Lincoln Center will be a powerhouse of many performances. Each group from hip hop dance to band, possessed an energy all its own, all profound and all as diverse as the youth participating.

It can be said that no two people are alike, and the same can be said for the personalities of each of the dance groups. Stepping into Hip Hop Dance I was submerged in a scene of laughing young women teaching one another dance moves and showing off their great skills. There was a playful energy in the room which, accompanied by hot music, grabbed you and dared you to dance. In the same room, the Young Menís Break Dance Crew, a group of laid-back guys who sat back and watched each other bust a move and were ready to help out a fellow dancer twist, turn or balance on their head. Young Women's dance was a flowing group of visual poets who focused on transforming president Ikeda's poem "To My Beloved Young American Friends" into a language of the body for all to enjoy. The group's energy was calm and soothing and there is no doubt that their goals of deepening their faith, touching the audience and strengthening the poemís message will be achieved.

Led by rhythmic drums, African dance had a powerful beat whose body-heated room was alive, moving and clapping to the earthy drum beats. Latin dance spiced up the lower lobby with its twirling, smiling pairs and hip-rolling music. The dancing gave new flare to the everyday numbers they used to count out the Latin steps.

It wasn't only the dancers that sent out strong energy. The MC Hip Hop Group was a concentrated room of vibing young men, sitting quietly and bobbing their heads to the creative flow of the words in each one of them. Their energy was grounded. Some said that they were just there to lay it down. For a group of powerful wordsmiths, their focused silence was loud.

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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