As 2016 comes to a close, we want to take some time to reflect on some of our favorite moments of the past year. Though of course we are very proud of the larger-scale initiatives we have developed and the partnerships and collaborations we have been privileged to take part in, sometimes it’s the small spontaneous activities that can really put things in perspective.
In February, we visited Chiang Rai, Thailand with MC Dumisani “Dumi RIGHT” Ndlovu, DJ Dan “Dirty Digits” Chaves, Beatmaker LaShondra “RyNea Soul” Hemphill, and B-Boy Geoff “Toyz aRe Us” Chang. (This was also our first residency to be led by a Next Level alumnus, Kane Smego, who was an MC on the Zimbabwe residency.)
We had many great moments in Thailand, but this video of DJ Dirty Digits and Dumi Right freestyling while preparing to eat dinner (notice the hot pot in front of them) in the Chiang Rai Night Bazaar stands out as an expression of hip-hop culture at its finest:
Most hip-hop arts – at least in their grassroots forms – are a way of engaging with the present moment, of diving into your current situation and making the most of it. This freestyle could not have happened in any other time or place, or with any other combination of people, and that’s precisely what makes it so powerful.
Stay tuned for more moments!