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Hip-hop ballet takes the internet by storm

Instructor merges hip-hop moves with classical ballet

When dance instructor Homer Bryant posted his class of ballerinas grooving out in a nontraditional dance session to his Instagram page, he had no idea the video, reposted by Só Bailarinos on Facebook, would garner 8.2 million views in just a few weeks.

Bryant, the founder and artistic director at the Chicago Multi-Cultural Dance Center (CMDC), offers training from ballet to African dance, and also experiments with various types of other creative expression. From this, “Hiplet,” a combination of hip-hop moves that incorporates classical ballet elements, was born.

“In order to stay relevant with young people, you have to do what they’re doing now … back in the ’90s we did rap ballet, then we did hip-hop, but now we’re keeping it relevant with classical ballet —taking it to another level and they love it,” Bryant told ABC’s Good Morning America. “But they have to train in the classical ballet discipline.”

Singer Lady Gaga and President Barack’s Obama’s daughters, Sasha and Malia, are among the students who have walked the halls of CMDC over the years. Though the avant-garde moves may seem difficult to execute, Bryant believes it’s something open to everyone.

“With a little practice and concentration, hard work, love and determination, you can do anything,” Bryant said.

Take a look at the viral Instagram video.


Check out the “Hiplet” dancers on Good Morning America.


Maya Jones is an associate editor at The Undefeated. She is a native New Orleanian who enjoys long walks down Frenchmen Street and romantic dates to Saints games.