Urban dance – Definition & Detailed Explanation – Dance Culture & Community Glossary

What is Urban Dance?

Urban dance, also known as street dance, is a genre of dance that originated in urban areas and is often associated with hip-hop culture. It is a diverse and dynamic form of dance that incorporates a wide range of styles and influences, including hip-hop, breakdancing, popping, locking, and house dance. Urban dance is characterized by its high energy, intricate footwork, and improvisational nature.

History of Urban Dance

Urban dance has its roots in African American and Latino communities in the United States, particularly in cities like New York and Los Angeles. The origins of urban dance can be traced back to the 1970s, when hip-hop music and culture began to emerge in these urban areas. Breakdancing, one of the earliest forms of urban dance, gained popularity in the 1980s and helped to establish urban dance as a distinct and influential art form.

Over the years, urban dance has continued to evolve and grow, with new styles and techniques emerging and spreading around the world. Today, urban dance is practiced and performed by dancers of all ages and backgrounds, and has become a popular form of expression and entertainment.

Styles of Urban Dance

There are many different styles of urban dance, each with its own unique characteristics and techniques. Some of the most popular styles of urban dance include:

– Hip-Hop: A high-energy and rhythmic style of dance that incorporates elements of street dance, breaking, and popping.
– Breakdancing: A dynamic and acrobatic style of dance that involves intricate footwork, spins, and freezes.
– Popping: A style of dance that focuses on isolations and robotic movements, often accompanied by popping and locking techniques.
– Locking: A funk-based style of dance that emphasizes fast and rhythmic movements, as well as exaggerated poses and facial expressions.
– House Dance: A style of dance that originated in the underground house music scene and is characterized by its fluid footwork and improvisational nature.

Each style of urban dance has its own unique history and cultural significance, and dancers often specialize in one or more styles to showcase their skills and creativity.

Influences on Urban Dance

Urban dance is influenced by a wide range of cultural, social, and artistic factors. Some of the key influences on urban dance include:

– Hip-Hop Culture: Hip-hop music, fashion, and art have had a significant impact on urban dance, shaping its style, attitude, and aesthetic.
– Street Culture: Urban dance is closely connected to street culture, including graffiti art, skateboarding, and other forms of urban expression.
– Globalization: Urban dance has been influenced by global trends and movements, as dancers from different countries and cultures share their techniques and styles.
– Technology: Advances in technology, such as social media and online platforms, have helped to spread urban dance and connect dancers from around the world.

These influences have helped to shape urban dance into a vibrant and dynamic art form that continues to evolve and innovate.

Urban Dance Community

The urban dance community is a diverse and inclusive group of dancers, choreographers, teachers, and enthusiasts who share a passion for urban dance. The community is united by a love of music, movement, and creativity, and is dedicated to promoting and preserving the art of urban dance.

Within the urban dance community, there are many opportunities for dancers to connect, collaborate, and learn from one another. Workshops, classes, competitions, and performances are just a few of the ways that dancers can come together to share their skills and experiences.

The urban dance community is also known for its supportive and welcoming atmosphere, where dancers of all levels and backgrounds can come together to learn, grow, and inspire one another. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned professional, there is a place for you in the urban dance community.

Urban Dance in Popular Culture

Urban dance has become a prominent and influential force in popular culture, with dancers and choreographers making a significant impact in music videos, movies, television shows, and live performances. Some of the most famous urban dancers and crews have achieved worldwide recognition and success, bringing urban dance to a global audience.

In recent years, urban dance has been featured in a wide range of mainstream media, from reality TV shows like “So You Think You Can Dance” to blockbuster films like “Step Up” and “You Got Served.” These platforms have helped to showcase the talent and creativity of urban dancers and have brought the art form to new audiences around the world.

Urban dance has also had a major influence on fashion, music, and entertainment, with many artists and designers drawing inspiration from urban dance culture. From streetwear brands to music videos, urban dance continues to shape and define popular culture in exciting and innovative ways.

In conclusion, urban dance is a vibrant and dynamic art form that has a rich history, diverse styles, and a strong sense of community. From its roots in hip-hop culture to its influence on popular culture, urban dance continues to evolve and inspire dancers around the world. Whether you are a seasoned professional or a beginner, there is a place for you in the urban dance community, where creativity, expression, and passion come together to create something truly special.