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 Hip Hop at UMD

UMD student and Funk-SOUL Patrol member, Tracy Yang. Photo from Facebook
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Funk Soul Patrol
Sends It Out and Gives It Back

They have no teachers, no coaches, and little dance background, but the one thing they do have is passion. For the members of Funk-SOUL Patrol it doesn't matter where they came from or where they are going, because all they want to do is dance.

Funk-SOUL Patrol is a dance group that combines the styles of hip-hop and funk to create a distinctive and diverse team. Formed by UMD students Tracy Yang and Zim Yang, along with University of Wisconsin-Superior student Ben Coz, these "lockers," "poppers," and "b-boys" are dancing their way through UMD.

Created in fall 2008, the official UMD student organization does not only perform to teach others about hip-hop, the members of Funk-SOUL Patrol dance for the community as well. On February 7 at St. Scholastica, Funk-SOUL Patrol will perform a benefit variety fundraiser for Take Back the Night, an event sponsored by the Program to Aid Victims of Sexual Assault (PAVSA). Take Back the Night is put on annually in Duluth to raise community's awareness of sexual assault.

The funk dance style became popular in California in the late 60s and early 70s, which has evolved into a popular sport. For Funk-SOUL Patrol, "It's all about style," said Cooper Crose, one of Funk-SOUL Patrol's twelve members. The other members are: Kayo Bangsil, P.R. Wangchug, Nick Marrandino, Gabe Fall, Alex Susuki, Reagan Lee, Jesse Smith, and Vince Yoong.

All the steps have names but it's up to the individual dancer to modify and make a step into their own style. Air flares, supermans, gliding, popping, and locking are some just some of the dance terms. "YouTube is a big instructional teacher for us, but we are mostly self taught," said Vince Yoong.

Last semester, Funk-SOUL Patrol practiced two to three times a week but now practices almost every night in the Kirby Student Center hallway outside of the lower level bookstore. Gabe Fall said, "The reason why we do it there is to encourage people to join. We want to educate people about what hip-hop is and why we love it so much." .”

Check out Funk-SOUL Patrol on Facebook.

Written by Ann Lichtenberg. Video by Donna O'Neill

UMD home page editor, Cheryl Reitan, creitan@d.umn.edu
NEW RELEASES, UMD media contact, Susan Latto, slatto@d.umn.edu, 218-726-8830

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