Feature: Live Vibe Generations - 20 years of Impact

Wednesday 27 January 2016 by Lise Smith

Fly No Filter

London’s Impact Dance has been busy celebrating its 20th year on the hip hop stage, and the birthday celebrations culminate in a very special Live Vibe showcase at The Peacock on Saturday 6th February. As well as performances from Impact’s two youth dance troupes, Impact Youth and Fully Functioning Individuals, Live Vibe Generations will feature the cream of the capital’s hip hop companies and guests invited from further afield, writes Lise Smith.

“It’s to close the 20-year celebrations of what we do,” says Impact’s Artistic Director and founder Hakeem Onibudo. Following a presentation at the Lilian Baylis Studio before Christmas and the 20th anniversary of Impact’s Xpress Yo’Self classes at Danceworks, Live Vibe Generations showcases performances by artists and companies who have worked with and been influenced by Impact Dance over the past two decades. “These are key companies and performers who we’ve met on our travels over the last twenty years and performed with,” says Hakeem. “We wanted to end the journey so far with a big celebration at The Peacock.”

One of the companies taking part in the Live Vibe experience is Birmingham’s Ace Youth. “We met Ace Youth in 2005 when we did the first National Youth Dance Festival – now called U.Dance,” explains Hakeem. “We met them there and have kept in touch – funnily enough, one of their dancers is now our Education Officer! We worked together as partners on a project last year called Future 4 Youth, which was very successful. They’re just amazing people who I love working with, and I really appreciate the work they produce so it made sense to invite them down.”

Also making the trip to the capital is Cambridge’s Fly No Filter, the relaunched SIN Cru theatre dance company. “Hakeem has been more than a peer during the last two decades,” says Artistic Director Lucy Crowe. “He’s been an amazing friend who has always given me sound advice and supported SIN Cru. It was his quiet warmth and faith which kickstarted our company relaunch.” Fly No Filter will be performing my mother told me there are many kinds of love , a highly personal work about “all the things that you’re not supposed to say out loud, or feel, as a parent. It’s about the ugliness of love, the pain. the banging your head against the wall over and over again.” The piece was in part inspired by the Dexter Fletcher film Wild Bill, about single parenthood.

“2016 is already shaping up to be a wonderful year with lots of creative opportunities,” smiles Lucy. “Our new company line up is a inspiring eclectic mix of professional bboys, theatre artists and contemporary dancers.” The company will be performing later this year at WGTF?! In France, on the Breakin’ Convention tour in King’s Lynn, and at Jam’n’Juice in Newcastle.

Visiting from even further afield is North Africa Dynamics, a group of B-boys from Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia. “We went to Tunisia to create a piece which actually came to the UK as part of South Africa Utopia in September 2014,” explains Hakeem. “Going into 2015 we assigned them a new choreographer called Salim, who works with Pokemon Crew, and because it was quite an iconic British Council project we decided to bring them over here for the show in February.”

The Live Vibe experience is always something special, with audiences as much a part of the show as the performers on stage. “I want the audience to be fully entertained,” says Hakeem, “It’s predominately a hip hop show but there’s also contemporary hip hop, so there should be an interesting array of different styles, different ways of moving.” A wide range of ages will also be representing onstage, from Impact Youth’s 10-16 year olds to veteran hip-hop dancers.
“The Live Vibe vibe is totally unique – it’s not just presenting a traditional show, it keeps everyone on their toes!” says Hakeem.

Join in the celebrations at Live Vibe Generations at The Peacock on Saturday 6 February, 7.30pm Tickets from £10.

Photo: Fly No Filter



Lise Smith is a dance manager and teacher who writes about dance for many publications, including Londonist & Arts Professional. Find her on Twitter: @lisekit

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