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Computer game characters inspire Norfolk dance group’s hip hop moves

PUBLISHED: 18:42 06 March 2017 | UPDATED: 08:18 07 March 2017

Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal.

Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal.

Norwich Theatre Royal

Mario, Donkey Kong and an array of other classic computer game characters are the inspiration for young dancers creating a new hip hop performance for the Breakin’ Convention festival heading to Norwich.

Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal. Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal.

The performers from Parallel Dance Studios are meeting at Stimpson’s Piece in Reepham each week to perfect their hip hop homage to some of the best-known computer game characters. They will perform their finished sequence at Norwich Theatre Royal on May 13 as part of the international hip hop festival.

Parallel Dance Studios’ owner and choreographer Lucy Cook came up with the idea when she saw her nephew playing Super Mario.

“I was thinking about how many of these games are legendary and never go out of fashion, and decided to put some ideas together to tell a story,” she said.

The performance will begin with two children playing games before the audience are taken into a cyber-world inspired by different characters.

Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal. Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal.

Ms Cook said: “Some of the characters are a bit tricky to portray. Mario is very robotic so we needed to show that, and there is lots of hip hop in the Donkey Kong section. There are lots of funny moments too.”

With some performers as young as eight, Ms Cook said they had to spend time introducing the characters to some of the dancers.

Ms Cook said: “Some of them did not know what the games were so we had a retro gaming session so they could have a go at them all. It has been a lot of fun putting this together.”

Parallel Dance Studios is one of three East Anglian groups taking part in Breakin’ Convention. Also performing will be Norwich-based all male dance company Legacy and Cambridge’s Fly No Filter. The local acts will share the stage with international performers including South Korean poppers and b-boys Just Dance, Canadian urban duo Tentacle Tribe and South Africa’s comedic contortionists Soweto Skeleton Movers.

Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal. Performers from Parallel Dance Studios are creating a hip hop homage to classic computer game characters for the Breakin’ Convention festival at Norwich Theatre Royal. Photo: Norwich Theatre Royal.

Ms Cook said it was a fantastic chance for her students to show what they can do.

“I keep telling them about the magnitude of being part of Breakin’ Convention. It is such a big deal. This sort of thing does not normally happen to a small Norfolk dance school like us,” she said.

Breakin’ Convention is at the Theatre Royal on May 13. Visit www.theatreroyalnorwich.co.uk

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