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isa and Lorenzo (right) won the exciting final in 2vs2 Afro Fusion against Julie and Bonito │© Martin von den Driesch Photography

World’s Afro dance champions crowned in Berlin

The World Best African Dance Championships took place recently in Berlin, parading some of the best Afro dancers in the world. The artists, from 12 countries, competed as soloists and crews in the categories 1vs1 Afro House, 1vs1 Coupé Décalé and 2vs2 Afro Fusion.

There was no pre-qualification for the contest as the participants were able to register at the venue, just before the events which took place at the popular Yaam directly on Berlin’s river Spree.

Abdul from Uganda won in 1vs1 Afro House │© Martin von den Driesch Photography
Abdul from Uganda won in 1vs1 Afro House │© Martin von den Driesch Photography

After two days of dancing, Abdul, aka Abdanger of Tabuflo, from Uganda prevailed against a strong Julie of the Donga Girls from Moscow (Russia) in 1vs1 Afro House. In 1vs1 Coupé Décalé, Bonito from France presented its best and convinced the jury with his flow and character. Denisa (Slovakia) and Lorenzo (Germany) won the exciting final in 2vs2 Afro Fusion against Julie (Russia) & Bonito.

In the Show Competition, Fuse Fam from Sweden defeated D Afro Gang (Slovakia) and Os Coconut (Poland). The groups R.C.L. Family (Germany) and AfroGyals from Gran Canaria (Spain) also participated and presented powerful and dynamic shows.

Before, between and after the dance competitions, there were consistently classic African beats, and the host, Prince of the M.I.K. Family, motivated the audience with his animation.

Organiser Cynthia Zombou of World Afro Dance brought the French dance legends Peeps and Blaakow and London’s “one and only” Sherrie Silver to Berlin to pep up the show.

Even though the African dance scene is still far from attaining the prominence of the classic urban formats such as Hip Hop, Breakdance or House, many parallels to the remaining urban scene can be seen at the event. However, Afro dance has its own rules and, like other styles, exhibits more exploration of roots and cultural background.

The first World Best African Dance Championships was very well organised and brought many cool people together. And one can already see that it has great potential. Let’s see how it develops.

Patrick Grigo

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