You may have noticed, hip-hop dance has gone legit — or at least slightly commercial. With TV shows like America's Best Dance Crew and So You Think You Can Dance and pop stars like Britney Spears bringing breakers and poppers on stage, you'd think there was money to be made somewhere.
There is, and Saturday's third edition of Breakonomics at the MIT student center will share some of the wealth: a full grand for the best three-person breaker crew, and $300 each for the best lone popper and houser. Plus, one four-person college or high-school crew will win tickets to the 2009 Red Bull BC One b-boy competition in New York. And, of course, bragging rights.
"The whole scene is kind of exploding in Boston right now," said Raymond Cheng, head of Imobilare, the MIT breakin' crew that's hosting and competing in the event.
Breakers, poppers, and housers from across the country have signed up to battle it out, and, according to Cheng, the event should reach its capacity of 500 entrants by Saturday. So if you plan on going, bring your patience as well as your kicks.
Judges will be renowned house dancer Brian Green, breaker Kid David, and winner of last year's popper challenge Kunle Oladehin, a/k/a Katalyst.
The day's other highlights include an exhibition East Coast grudge match between Boston's Jet Liem and Brooklyn's Fifo.
Katalyst warns, bring the heat but check your attitude at the door.
"It's good to be confident, but not to the point of being disrespectful. That's a big no-no for me," he says. "Mostly cause if you are doing that, it just shows you lack confidence."
Breakonomics 2009 will take place on Saturday, April 25, from 11 am to 8 pm, at La Sala de Puerto Rico on the second floor of MIT's Student Center (Building W20), 84 Mass Ave, in Cambridge. Tickets are $10; $7 for MIT students. For more information, visit sao.mit.edu/tickets.