Street dance competition hits climax

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One of the dance crews on stage at Club Rafiki.

A cash prize of Rwf1,000,000 is up for grabs as the first edition of the National Street Dance competition hits the climax this weekend.

The National Street Dance is a street dance competition targeting the youth from all provinces of the country. It is organised by Vast Pro, a local events company in partnership with the Aids Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Rwanda.

After a tour of the different provinces of the country in which eight winning dance crews were selected, the competition heads into the grand finale in Rubavu district, Northern Province on Saturday February 17.

The event will take place at the Rubavu Public beach beginning at 1pm.

The organisers said the first edition will focus on talent development and promotion of the dance art form in the country, with special focus on modern and African dance forms.

According to a press release from the organisers, the main objective of this event is to detect and promote youth with dance talent.

It also involves sensitisation of youth on HIV prevention, sexual reproductive health, and voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC).

Under the theme Dance in your style but remember your life is in your hands”, the competition kicked off on January 13, in Kayonza District in the Eastern Province, where YCEG Dance crew emerged winner.

On January 20, the competition headed to Rubavu, in the Western Province, where the Hope Dance crew won the competition.

The Masters crew from Musanze won the competition to represent the Northern Province when the competition reached Musanze district on January 21.

In Huye district, the Wasafi Dance Crew emerged winner on January 28, and will represent the Southern Province at the finale.

The regional competitions wound up in Kigali, where a total of four dance crews were selected as opposed to one, each from the provinces. On February 3, Kimisagara Youth Centre hosted the first competition, from which two dance crews were selected; KTY Dance Crew, and The Finest Dance crew.

On February 4, Kigali dance crews battled it out for the two remaining slots at Club Rafiki in Nyamirambo. Here, the Snipers Dance crew, and The Monsters dance crew emerged winners to advance to the finale.

Winning groups were selected by a three-member panel of judges including Simon Rwema, Brian Geza, and singer Phionah Mbabazi.

“Rwandans should be aware (especially the entertainment industry) that there are many big dance talents in this land,” explained Mbabazi.

“Of all competitions I’ve judged, this dance competition is incomparable. The dancers are really competitive and I liked that they knew what they wanted. They are really into it, which is a great thing for one who is laying a career foundation.

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Judge Phionah Mbabazi makes a point after one of the regional dance contests. Left is Simon Rwema.

Mbabazi advised participants not to cross the line of confidence into overconfidence.

“Many times during the competitions I saw teams that performed well during the first sessions but lost the competition after thinking they didn’t have to do more in the second session.”

The winning crew will walk away with a cash prize of Rwf1,000,000, while the first and second runners up will receive Rwf300,000 and Rwf200,000 respectively.

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There was a huge crowd at Club Rafiki in Nyamirambo
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Members of The Finest dance crew after winning the competition in Kimisagara

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