A Langford dancer will be active internationally as a member of the Canadian hip-hop dance team.
Brooklyn Alexander is part of the Team Canada Dance Team heading to the IDO World Hip-Hop Popping and Breaking Championships in Kielce, Poland from October 23-28.
Alexander started dancing at the age of 4, initially experimenting with ballet and jazz, but found the faster-paced hip-hop dance to be his style.
“A lot of people like to slow dance, but the happiness I get from doing hip-hop is much better for me, because hip-hop is smart. And instead of drawing really sharp straight lines and thin lines, you can do whatever you want.”
For Alexander, dancing helped him cope with difficulties at school and was also a means of self-expression.
“Otherwise, she wants to be a wallflower,” said Alexander’s mother Kathy. “She doesn’t want attention. She makes a fuss for everyone else on that stage, it’s the saying, ‘Dance like no one is watching’. that’s what she does. “
Since graduating from Belmont last year, she has been practicing her skills and passing them on to the next generation of breakdancers.
“To come up with something and teach it to others. It’s kind of a surreal moment to see them doing something I made,” Alexander said. “I also teach little kids, seeing them start where I started and seeing how passionate they are about it. It’s really cool to come to and see you always want to keep going, but it just reminds me of when I was that age.”
Auditioning for the national team felt like a distant tale, especially given how expensive it was. Alexander’s mother estimates that the family could face significant expenses totaling around $7,000, including a trip to Poland as well as a night’s rehearsal in Vancouver over the summer. Includes stay.
But persuaded by her mother, she applied for a video audition, which became a habit during the pandemic.
“I went to her room at 6am and she started jumping on her bed. As soon as I read the email, I knew it was inevitable. ‘No, this can’t happen in Brooklyn.’ I thought.
The sport has little government funding, so dancers are responsible for funding their own travel through sponsorships and GoFundMe campaigns. Breakdancing (“breaking”) is set to be a sport at the 2024 Paris Olympics and Kathy said she hopes it will get more recognition and funding in the future.
“I don’t think people understand the dance itself and how serious it is for some people because if it’s not a sport with two teams and a referee, it’s not a sport. But dance has a Canadian team because people don’t think of dance as a sport, and we thought of it as a sport.”
dance langford west shore