Hip-hop festival to return to Birmingham

Published: 12 April 2023
Reporter: Steve Orme

The 2022 B-SIDE Hip-Hop Festival Credit: Joe Bailey

Celebrating 50 years since the birth of hip hop, the B-SIDE Hip-Hop Festival is to return to Birmingham for “seven days of extraordinary dance, performances competitions and events”.

The free annual festival will take place from Thursday 8 until Wednesday 14 June and will bring together the best artists and acts from all four elements of the genre: breakin’, graffiti, DJing and MCing.

Birmingham Hippodrome’s Young Advocates will curate an event for young people aged 14 and over at the theatre on 8 June. The day will include taster sessions and workshops led by local artists exploring all elements of hip hop as well as an informal open mic session.

On Friday 9 June the Hippodrome will host professional-level dance masterclasses led by international artists and a screening of the BBC documentary Fight the Power—How Hip Hop Changed the World.

The festival will move into the city across the weekend with dancers competing in the Break Mission Worldwide Dance Championships and Queerside: Waacking Championships. The two grand finals will take place at Bullring and Grand Central on Sunday 11 June.

The festival culminates at the Hippodrome on Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 June with Breakin’ Convention, a showcase of hip-hop dance theatre featuring international headline acts alongside local hip-hop crews.

Chris Sudworth, the Hippodrome’s creative director, said, “we’re thrilled to bring our annual festival back to the city for its eighth year. We’re looking forward to welcoming exceptional international dancers to the competitions while also shining a light on all the fantastic talent across Birmingham.”

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