In March, hip-hop dance crew 9M5 took to the Hart House Theatre stage in the final freestyle round of U of T’s first Urban Dance Competition. Battling against two remaining crews, 9M5 locked and popped to Justin Bieber’s “No Sense” – and their sharp formation and expressive personalities snagged them the win. “They just killed it in freestyling,” says Kangbin Zhou, president of Urban Dance Revolution (the U of T club that put on the event) and a PhD student in pharmacology.
Five teams made up of U of T students competed in the event. Similar to the TV show So You Think You Can Dance, audience members and a panel of judges were involved in the voting.
Although the crews’ perfected routines may have looked seamless, the training was long and arduous. Getting the formation precise – everyone in perfect sync – in a hip-hop crew is the tricky part, says Zhou: “About one second [of performance] equals one hour of training or more.”
Watch: U of T’s first Urban Dance Competition: