A Childhood Dream

Between the ages of 15-18, I went religiously every Sunday evening to the open hip-hop classes held by Funkanometry SF. I even had my mom drive me the 45 minutes to and from Westlake School for the Performing Arts (and later on to City Dance) when I couldn't drive on my own. It was my one and only opportunity to take hip-hop, and I looked forward to it every week.

There was one class and instructor that particularly inspired me: Patrick Cruz. It was my first introduction to a hip-hop style that was controlled and smooth yet funky and groovy. I was a 16 year-old girl trained mainly in jazz and contemporary, and I think I butchered his choreography (in the worst way possible). But I loved it, and his class lead me to discover The Company, Gen2, and Shaun Evaristo.

From then on I was ravenous to improve my hip-hop skills. I used videos like the one below as a measure of hip-hop perfection, and probably watched this about 1,000 times:

Okay, maybe I watched it 2,000 times. And each time I watched, I dreamed of one day being able to dance hip-hop with as much style and finesse as they did.

Now fast forward seven years after hundreds of hip-hop classes and a collegiate team later. On March 16, 2013, I along with 14 other talented dancers including Amanda Grind, Anthony Lee, and Mr. Patrick Cruz himself performed at Urban Paradise 2013:

The number was choreographed and staged by Pat in just a few days, and I'm astounded by how well everything came together in that short amount of time. I thoroughly enjoyed the creative process and learned a lot along the way. Pat is not only a talented dancer and artist, but also an effective leader and smart choreographer. While it was an honor to perform at Urban Paradise with Entity, it was an even greater personal triumph to be at the event dancing with Pat.

So here's a special shout out to the Bay Area folk: Thank you for inspiring me, and thank you for allowing me to fulfill a (not so) silly childhood dream.