IN THE GROOVE: Sole Studios Hip Hop Dance School dancers Jasmine Ballantyne, Rhiana Cooke and Mariah Martignago are part of a 14-member team set to compete in the US.
IN THE GROOVE: Sole Studios Hip Hop Dance School dancers Jasmine Ballantyne, Rhiana Cooke and Mariah Martignago are part of a 14-member team set to compete in the US. Gina Gale Photography

Sole deep hip hop dancers off to US

THEY have grooved their way to the United States to strut their stuff on the world stage for hip hop.

Sole Studios Hip Hop Dance School crews, Expialadopest (junior crew), Checkmate (Varsity crew) and Genetik (open crew) all placed second at the Australian Hip Hop Championships in Sydney.

The two older crews, Genetik and Checkmate, have been given the opportunity to compete at the World Hip Hop Championship in Las Vegas from August 5-10.

Owner and choreographer Taneikah Wescome was overwhelmed with the dancers' success. "It was totally unexpected, we were training really hard for it but being the first competition of the year, we didn't know where we stood," Ms Wescome said. "I am so proud of the dancers, they worked really hard for it and it is really paying off."

She said the Varsity team, made up of seven dancers aged 13 to 18 years, have really bonded together and "just put everything on the stage".

Genetik had a few hiccups. Only weeks before the Australian championships, they had to replace a dancer. "It is the toughest category ... having all those hiccups and placing so well is awesome."

The teams have been handed their training schedule for the next 11 weeks, including gym sessions, nutrition plans and of course lots of dancing. "We don't want to take this opportunity lightly," she said. "Now everyone has their game faces on and are ready to train insane."

Genetik dancer Sabrina McCarthy, 17, said her crew was beyond excited that all their hard work had paid off.

"We all cried, we were so happy, it was the best feeling," Sabrina said.

This is Sabrina's third trip overseas, after training at New Zealand and New York conventions in the past two years.

Check out http://www.facebook.com/solestudiosdance for fundraising details to help the 14 dancers attend the championships.


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