Hypnotiq and Blue Strut Dance with New Twists

Andover’s hip-hop and jazz dance ensembles, Hypnotiq and Blue Strut, entertained the audience with unexpected twists in their routines last Sunday in Tang Theatre. Hypnotiq is Andover’s hip-hop group, while Blue Strut is Andover’s jazz group.

“I like that there was a mix of hip-hop versus ballet moves. It was nice that they kind of switched up so the groups kind of went in between each other, giving it some variation,” said Neferterneken Francis, Instructor in Chemistry.

Francis said she enjoyed the new twist into the dancers’ performance, in addition to their typical genres of music, Hypnotiq danced to slow R&B songs, while Blue Strut danced to a hip-hop song.

The show opened with a powerful dance by the members of Hypnotiq, who danced to the energetic beats of “All For You” by Janet Jackson, “Fly in Her Nikes (feat. Josh Everette)” by Mac Miller and “All Back” by Chris Brown.

The dance was choreographed by Cherita Moore ’12, Borkeny Sambou ’12 and Unwana Abasi ’13, Hypnotiq’s three co-heads. Blue rays of light flashed among the stage and dancers, completing the dance.

Hypnotiq dancer Thomaia Pamplin ’14 said, “[The song to the opening dance] is a really bouncy song so when I started dancing, I just [couldn’t] help but immediately start smiling.”

Following Hypnotiq’s opening performance, three Blue Strut dancers, Madeline Silva ’13, Aly Wayne ’14 and Madeleine Kim ’12, co-head of Blue Strut, danced to a rock song “Crazy on You” by Heart.

Despite the fast-paced country-rock style of the song, the dancers performed the piece with an elegant fluidity that blended well with the song. An unconventional choice of song for Blue Strut, it was popular among the audience.

“I really liked it. There were a lot of different styles of music, they had country and they had hip-hop. There was a lot of different moves and fluidity when they did it,” said Siddarth Palaniappan ’13.

One of the highlights of the entire show was Blue Strut’s hip-hop style performance to the music “Empire State of Mind,” choreographed by Brianna Barros ’12. Barros, along with Rachel Murree ’14 and Juliana Brandano ’12, jump-started their dance with a mysterious feel, their faces hidden underneath the hood of their sweatshirts.

“I listened to the song and I wanted to try and do a song with no counts, completely inspired by the music. I also did it as a fusion piece, which means you take two kinds of dance and I took hip-hop and modern. I made it a little bit contemporary rather than just doing one distinct style,” said Barros.

“It was funny when Brianna went out there with her Chinese [oriental-patterned] hoodie. It was cool working with Blue Strut,” said Zoe Roschach ’12, another Hypnotiq dancer.

Hypnotiq members’ dance to “Wanna Freak ET Up and Down,” also choreographed by its three co-heads, once again impressed the audience. Hypnotiq performed the piece previously at Abbot Cabaret on February 4.

Of choreographing the piece, Moore said, “[When choreographing] I just mostly picked songs that I liked. I just think, I really like this song and it really makes me want to dance so I just start dancing to it. I made ‘ET’ spring term last year.”

Blue Strut then continued to attract the audience with their dance to Millow’s “You Don’t Know.” The soothing sound of the music naturally complemented the dancers’ graceful and skillful movements.

Following Blue Strut’s show, Hypnotiq’s energetic dance to the dynamic song “Motto Gonna Motivate You to the Sky,” featured dancers that carefully synchronized their moves.

“Run the World” by Beyoncé, performed by Hypnotiq dancers Moore, Sambou and Abasi, was the finale dance, followed by loud applause.

Yuni Sumawijaya ’12 said, “I felt like I connected with the dancers because they were looking at me while they were dancing. I really like ‘Run the World’ because it felt so empowering.”

After the show, all the Blue Strut members joined Hypnotiq dancers on the stage for a short collaborated piece. Both Blue Strut and Hypnotiq dancers danced in their own unique styles, but still subtly harmonized each other well.