By Sheri Jardine, communications manager, UtahPresents
Young, committed and conscientious, the dancers of Versa Style are setting out to change what you think about hip-hop. The two founders, both teachers at UCLA (and national and international hip-hop battle award winners), create works that fuse dance styles to break down barriers in style and culture.
Kicking off the UtahPresents 2016-17 season, Versa Style will perform at Kingsbury Hall on Friday, Sept. 9 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25, with a $5 ticket for U students and a $10 ticket for non-U students and youth under 18. Tickets are available at 801-581-7100 or utahpresents.org.
An after party for students will immediately follow the performance and is free with a student ID. Held on the stage of Kingsbury Hall, there will be a live DJ, dancing ,free food and a guest appearance by Versa Style.
In addition to the public performance, Versa Style will be teaching classes with students and community members, as well as performing for 3rd-12th grade students during a school matinee at Kingsbury Hall.
Versa Style is a dance ensemble of artists representing the diversity and beautiful complexity of Los Angeles. The company creates highly energetic work that fuses dances that are culturally significant to the diverse LA community. These forms include Hip-Hop styles such as 90s Hip-Hop, House, Popping, Locking, Whacking and Boogaloo, and Afro-Latin styles such as Salsa, Merengue, Cumbia and Afro-Cuban to name a few. As a reaction to the widespread media misrepresentation of these dance forms, Versa Style specifically aims to perform for the youth of Los Angeles to instill the roots, history and social and political issues surrounding the art of their generation. Hip-Hop breaks color lines by creating a forum where people come together for a common passion rather than grouping themselves by race or socio-economic backgrounds. Versa Style demonstrates freedom of expression, freedom of individuality, hard work, self-discipline and dedication to the form.