We Filipinos are known for our rich culture, the fact that we’ve been colonized by three countries can attest to that. One thing I’m really thankful for from one of these colonizers, America in particular, is their contribution to our dance culture. Hip Hop is indeed prolific in this country and more and more dancers shift from one dance genre to the streetdance genre because of its rawness. That’s why When In Manila, one must be able to watch at least one streetdance competition to experience how great Pinoy Hip Hop dancers are on stage.
The famous Skechers stage. I remember the feeling of being able to dance here. It’s ecstatic
This year (like every year) the only streetdance competition that immortalizes one’s status in the dance world is Skechers Streetdance Battle. Now on its 8th year, it has yet again produced a roster of champions and a handful of raw dance talents.
Hosts: Gab Valencio and Sam YG
This year’s Skechers Streetdance Battle judges are: Gelai, one G-force’s commendable dancers; Lema Diaz, Kenjohn Serrance and Prince Paltu-Ob who are former Allstars dancers and World Hip Hop champions; Jon Supan a famous filipino Streetdance icon and Dumbo of Poreotix an ABDC champion. Without these Streetdance royalties the champions wouldn’t have been determined and I bet they really had a hard time to choose because each dance crew had something different to offer.
Skechers Streetdance will always be a memorable experience for me. Aside from the hardknock opening numbers, amazing routines and emotional awarding ceremoni, this dance competition also has a mob dance,lead by one of the judges, Prince Paltu-Ob. In addition to that, a streetdance competition wouldn’t be complete without a freestyle battle. This yeas’s Skechers Streetdance battle winners were reps from LSGH Airforce and UPLB’s SJC. Finally, since Skechers is a shoeline, a short streetstyle modeling competition was also held. Winners were Miriam’s Sayawatha member Amiel Garces and Bulakan State University’s Hiroyuki Shiki.
Last year’s Skechers Streetdance battle was jumpstarted by world-renowned crew from New Zealand named ReQuest. This year was somehow the same, the only difference was that this time it was world-renowned dancers from our own country. Team Pilipinas were the crews that represented our country and placed in the recent international dance competition in Vegas called World Hip Hop International. These teams reunited and performed as one on stage. A-Team performed a hyped up power LA choreography, Legit status with their distinct swagger style, Tha project presented strong old school Hip Hop moves and The Crew wowed the crowd with their smooth, masculine and unique style. When they all got together on stage the crowd went wild and everybody just put their hands up to the beat.
Opening Number from Team Pilipinas: A-Team, Legit Status & Tha Project. (The Crew)
Another segment that shouldn’t be missed is the number before the announcing of winners. This production number is one big routine performed by the representatives of each school that made it to the final battle. It was spine-tingling the number of dancers on stage. The streetdance community has indeed grown in the past few years.
And now for the winners (High School Division) we have in third place, CSA Dance Troupe. This Streetdance crew has been a consistent contender throughout Skechers history and it is satisfying to see that they finally placed this year. Overall the highlights of their routine were the clean transitions and energetic movies as well the dancehall, locking/ house and Krumping segments. Their moves were in sync with eachother and they moved as one.
3rd place: CSA DT
Last year’s champions finally gave way to a new crew. SPCP’s Terpsichore placed second in this year’s battle. No big deal, actually. These young ladies have brought a new flavor of sexiness to the competition and have definitely made a name for their team. The best part was their waacking segment and unexpected sexy moves in between each segment. These ladies brought swag and sexy together. I personally hope they place again next year.
2nd Place: SPCP Terpsichore
This year’s Skechers Streetdance Battle High School Champions were LSGH’s Airforce. What’s amazingly champion-worthy about their routine was their consistent high level of energy and clean execution. Their choice of songs were unexpected but they were able to pull it off with their lasallian charms and attitiude. They presented almost every dance style and the quality of their routine can actually be the same as that of a college crew. Congratulations to these boys!
Champions : LSGH Airforce
Next we have the College Division winners.
It was devastating not to see ADMU’s CADs in last year’s battle, but they have redeemed themselves and placed third this year! CADs has been known for their out-of-the-box routine and definite Streetdance style. This year they presented what they were known for and umphed it up to a higher level with a laid back, “pogi” routine and everything was smoothly executed.
3rd Place: ADMU CADs
UPLB’s SJC is not new to bagging titles. They have been recognized in different streetdance competitions for their expertise in freestyle,musicality, swag and sexiness. They placed second in this year’s final battle and also won the freestyle battle. They are indeed one of the top contenders that other teams should watch out for, they might be able to bag the champion title next year.
2nd Place : UPLB SJC
Once Again retaining their title as Skechers Streetdance champion title is DLSU’s LSDC Street. This crew has been blessed for the past few years and they’re bagging one title after the other. And as of now, they are unbeatable. Unlike other typical routines, theirs had a message: to appreciate . It was a fusion of Krump, Michael Jackson moves, stunts, vogueing, tutting, isolations, popping and tons of power moves. Along with their prominent attitude, synchronized moves and clean routine; they were able to bag the Championship title.
Champions: LSDC Street
Skechers Streetdance Battle 8 was one heck of a battle to remember. Standards have now been set higher and it’s up to next year’s contenders if they will maintain that bar or even set it higher.
Thank you: Nina Barbero for the photos and Michelle Obligacion.
Skechers Streetdance Battle 8: A Battle to Remember