When the contest started, 19 different teams from countries around the world got to dance their way into the semi finals. Canada had a cool team. Props to Japan for having a chiptune set. Their whole routine was set to mixed up Nintendo music, including the music from Mario that alerts you that the time in your level is running for when the time in their routine was running out. Brazil had a cool set that included some capoeira. The US was awful. They took the opportunity to showcase their breakdancing skills to the world, and instead turned it into some silly vague political statement meaning of course that there was no way that they would place, and they didn't. The entire list of crews were as follows: [includes links and the BOTY2008 hosts, djs, and judges (who were also breakdancers).]
Qualified and confirmed crews:
Tsunami Allstars (Brasil) Now or Never (Canada)
Smokemon (France) TNT Crew (Germany)
Dead Prezz (Greece) Unstopabulls (Israel)
Kaiten Ninja (Japan) TIP (Korea)
Extreme Crew (Korea) La Halla King Zoo (Marocco)
Groove Kingz (Netherlands) Bad Taste Cru (Northern Ireland)
Crazy Twisting Tribal Team (Poland) Top 9 (Russia)
Fallen Angels (Spain) Octagon (Sweden)
Ghost Rockz (Switzerland) Formosa (Taiwan)
Furious Souldiers (USA)
Hosts: Spax ( D ), Trix ( GB )
DJs: Element (USA), Kid Cut (Germany)
Judges: Crazy (Switzerland), Born (Korea), Vartan (Germany), David Colas (France), Kid David (USA)
International Dance Showcases:
Flying Steps (Germany)
Hilty & Bosch (Japan)
Also, watch this highlight video of the competition and in the crowd shot at the beginning you can see me for a split second up front before the camera pans away to the stage. I'm wearing blue on my head.
The contest was awesome! Russia ended up coming out on top winning best show and first place. I was personally pulling for Korea at the end. Oh well! After the show we took off and found a place to grab some falafel and ate in front of a closed bank before walking back to the train station.
The earliest train going out was at 6:17 in the morning so Braunscheig Hauptbahnhof was converted into a huge after party. Imagine a few hundred people in the photo of the station. A dj showed up and someone even brought a drumset. Breakdance circles popped up everywhere. People danced all night! I even saw an old lady hop into one of the circles and breakdance. Salah, the French pop&lock/break dancer (cool video link) came out to the train station. A bunch of girls made fun of his performance at BOTY and thus challenged him to a dance off in which he showed them up so hard. It was cool to see him hanging out and interacting with all the other dancers. (He reminded me of doseone freestyling with all the kids in the parking lot before the Subtle show.) After the dj took off, kids busted out their boomboxes and continued on dancing. We tried taking a quick nap in a corner, but with this much going on it didn't work so well. People were collecting bottles for money, the stores stayed open late in the station, kids were trying out all the moves that they learned that night, people were teaching each other moves, and all in all everyone was having fun. All you kids who went to the sleek corporate-sponsered after party at the club, missed out and are fake anyways. I looked at pictures of the official after party and it looked like a lame college night at a club with a bunch of dressed upclub kiddies running around with their cocktails talking about how cool hip-hop is, but whatever; I'm sure they had fun too.
So until noon the following day it was nothing but train stations as buses until we finally made our way back to Solingen. I chose not to sleep right away so that I could stay up not mess up my sleep schedule. Success! I went for a walk to keep myself awake and found these cool tunnels and the botanical garden here in town. I also walked downtown and wondered about for a bit. Ok, this is getting boring. Hope everyone is doing well stateside!