The Lincoln Center in Fort Collins had its walls and ceilings shaken as numerous performers hit the stage -literally – and showed the audience how music in the soul is best channeled through the feet and hands.
Saturday night was not just a night for tailgating and football, it was a night for hip-hop inspired Greek organizations to compete in a step show. The 11th Annual Hip-Hop Explosion was a tremendous success and a great experience.
What's a "step show" you ask? Well, if you're wondering what all the clanking and stomping coming from the upstairs neighbor is, then perhaps you've heard. But if the clanking and stomping around has no rhythm, then your neighbors might just want to stop playing full-contact chess or whatever it is that is causing dust to fall from the ceiling. Relationship counseling perhaps could help the noise? Or maybe your neighbors just need a good hip-hop or jazz beat to guide them along.
Artful and automatic, "stepping" is a dance that combines elements of military-style drills with jazz and hip-hop body motions and movements. In a step show, the body takes the drum's role. Clapping and slapping hands against different parts of the body and stomping feet produce the dance's complex and choreographed rhythm.
CSU's Black Student Alliance headed up the tradition that allowed for many groups to compete in your ears and eyes. Each group consisted of multicultural Greek organizations from CSU and numerous other states. Each group demonstrated their skill in singing and chanting while they synchronized their body movements to create a visually stunning and incredible listening experience. All the performances were further encouraged by the audience response, and the look on everyone's faces from the front row was one of awe and excitement for the next act to come on stage.
Although it was a cultural celebration, the Hip-Hop Explosion was also a competition to reward the best performance from each category of sorority and fraternity with a prize of $1,200.
CSU's own Alpha Kappa Alpha was the winner of the sorority competition. The group had a hilarious and unique way of looking, dancing and acting. Dressed up in inmate suits and pink Timberlands, the ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha kept the audience going with their echoing heels and their chanting along.
New York comedian Just Jay hosted the show and did her best to look fly and keep the audience laughing and involved before and after each performance.
Check out Verve in Thursday's Collegian when a follow-up interview with the performers of Alpha Kappa Alpha will help recognize the new – yet – 11-year-old tradition here at CSU. It might even give you more rhythm.