Isolation during the pandemic is bringing out the creativity of members of a new dance-focused student organization.
Streetlight Mob, a black cultural street dance team, was formed at the start of the semester after separating from others during the pandemic, said Kaniya Webb, a third year in dance and arts management and founder and president of the group. The group explores a wide range of street dance genres for artists, such as hip-hop, afro-fusion and krump.
“Hip-hop is a black, cultured style of dance,” said Webb. “He came from black communities that didn’t really have much. Sometimes all they had was dancing – jigs, grooves. “
Streetlight Mob is different from other dance groups because the team isn’t looking for perfect dancers who fit into a developed group from the start, Webb said. She said she founded the group because she felt there was a need for a dance center that incorporated both professional and inexperienced dancers, and that she was ready to teach and work. with people who want to grow.
“I’m looking for people who are constantly trying, who show up and who are going to work anyway because, at the end of the day, those are the people who are going to grow the most,” said Webb.
Eboni Edwards, a third year in dance and psychology and team vice president, said Streetlight Mob is unique because it creates a space for dancers from all walks of life to perform on stage.
“There were different dance teams doing different types of moves,” Edwards said. “But there was no real space on campus to just be who you are.”
Webb said she tries to create black cultural street dances where the dancers in the group can feel free, like they’re dancing at home when no one is watching them.
“Everyone has their own technique, everyone has their own rhythms,” said Webb. “I try to adapt to it and I try to create a movement that makes them fun.”
Barry Nickell, a first year in dance and a member of Streetlight Mob, said the team is a positive and supportive community.
“Even though I haven’t been at the club for very long, I feel like I’ve improved so much,” said Nickell. “You have many opportunities to express yourself as an individual. “
Webb said that while the team is a black cultural street dance team, it is not a group exclusive to the black community.
“Anyone can be a part of it as a collective,” said Webb. “Everyone has a certain street life from which they come. Everyone has a story.
The team will perform at the CHVD JUSTIN pop-up store in Hale Hall on Nov. 19 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., Webb said. They will also perform virtually for a FAFSA awareness event in November.
Auditions will take place in the spring semester in January or February for new dancers, Webb said. More information on Streetlight Mob Dance Crew can be found on his Instagram pages.