Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Spotlight On: The L0st Kids

Today's spotlight feature is on a crew not from Los Angeles, but from the Bay Area: the Lost Kids (also: l0st kids as labeled on their myspace site). They've made some waves in the past year, performing at several choreography showcases and teaching workshops around California and overseas. You can see their myspace site here (Photo above is from their myspace site) You can also see some of their work here:

Like many other new crews in California, they're vibrant and have gathered a strong fan following. So why the hype? Let's start with their performances. The Lost Kids have impressed audiences with their use of partner choreography, which is rare when there are hip hop choreo teams with 30+ people on stage. Their smaller numbers allow them to be much more expressive with individual and paired movements. Plus, it's just cool to see partner work in hip hop routines. At the World of Dance Tour in Pomona earlier this year, the Lost Kids showcased a sexy, light-hearted piece using chairs and props. Needless to say, they stood out.

Next, they've advertised themselves with a coherent message and quirky group persona. Taking a cue from the Lost Boys from J.M. Barrie's "Peter Pan," they've identified themselves with the outcasts out who can find self-empowerment in their own strengths, beauty, and talents. They're lost kids who are out to help and support other lost kids. When they auditioned for season 4 of ABDC, they wore fuzzy animal tails as part of their fashion statement. They clearly have a sense of humor. But all of these measures only helps to endear them to a young audience who may feel a little different from everyone else. The Lost Kids have branded themselves as inclusive, welcoming, and non-judgemental; which is refreshing in these politically divisive times. Their message doesn't tie them to any one specific region, scene, or culture. It's a universal theme so their appeal can stretch across geographic borders. No matter where we are, sometimes we feel a little lost.

And finally, this Bay Area crew have differentiated themselves from several southern California teams by not relying on street styles. After a while; seeing crew after crew featuring popping-inspired choreography, some toprock, or basic locking foundation can get monotonous. But the Lost Kids have kept it fresh by staying away from tried and true ideas, and revealing more of their daring personalities through their artistic choices. The crew seems to work well with combining the varied styles of their individual members and making it gel as a whole. The test of this team will be seeing how they invest in a younger generation and how their students will carry on their message.

What's the next step for the Lost Kids? That remains to be seen. Whether they gain nation-wide media exposure through television, films, or the web; it'll be cool to see how they evolve their style over time. The Bay Area can claim hometown pride with them, for sure. But everyone can celebrate what they stand for.

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