After blowing the rooftop off the Seychelles Sport Complex, the most explosive hip hop lineup on the Island Dream Team has won a place in the finals of the sixth edition of the Indian Ocean event dubbed “Battle of the East, Indian Ocean Tour,” to be held on November 18 in Reunion.
More than 600 spectators, the largest crowd ever recorded in a regional paid show, attended Seychelles’ first edition of the Hip Hop Battle selection.
Initiated as part of Seychelles Reunion bilateral cooperation, with the support of Seychelles’ French cultural center, Alliance Francaise, the Hip Hop battle selection has drawn to Seychelles 2 headliners of Hip Hop dance professionals: Bouba Color from France and Shanty Arzeux from Reunion, judges of the selection battle.
“Seychelles Hip Hop is surely at an inferior level when compared to countries which had made legacy in this kind of dance music. But for a maiden edition, we were amazed that although the 11 teams presented for the selection did not have professional training, their techniques were up to the level required,” said Bouba.
Seychelles explained Shanty “has a lot of potential to develop the Hip Hop battle dance, but it needed proper training infrastructures and professionals to teach young people the dance moves. Hip Hop dance is an art, a philosophy adaptable in every culture, even in Seychelles.”
The Grand Final of the “Battle of the East, Indian Ocean tour” will see a lineup of Hip Hop groups from Madagascar, Mauritius, Mayotte, South Africa, Reunion, and Seychelles.
Shanty Arzeux said that “the booming Indian Ocean Hip Hop final has evolved into a massive marketing tool for Reunion.” He said that although Reunion has hosted the finals for 6consecutive years, the ball could be passed on to another Indian Ocean island or countries, which are financially sound to organize such a massive event.”
A Hip Hop dance activist, Julie Nancey from the “Jockers Crew team” has been the driving force behind the Hip Hop Battle selection in Seychelles. She said that the selection will now become an annual event in Seychelles and its success will only depend on the support of all partners concerned.
Julie explained that she is working on a series of projects to propel the Hip Hop movement, and the training programs conducted by Bouba Color and Shany Arzeux during their stay in Seychelles will further help in the development of Hip Hop dance in the country.