Allan Ulrich reviews the San Francisco Hip Hop Dance Fest for Voice of Dance:

?The mood was sweet and joyful Thursday and why not? In six years, producer Micaya has built an institution on the Bay Area dance scene; I can?t believe any local dance festival attracts as much interest or as many paying customers as this one. Hip hop is definitely a growth industry; have kids deserted ballet for breaking, one wondered. The festival started with a couple of nights of dancing at now shuttered Theater Artaud and featured only Bay Area talent. This weekend, the festival should fill PFA four times over, with different performers; lectures and master classes have been added for Saturday and Sunday afternoons and the talent this time comes from all over the country. Tomorrow the world.?

The critics were stacked Thursday night?I sat next to Allan and behind the SF Bay Guardian?s Rita Felciano. And I grinned the whole program through. Some favorites: the cheeky Chaplin-esque humor of Generation 2; the musical innovation of Micaya?s SoulForce, whose number sent one man spinning to a piano interlude; the debonair quality of Chain Reaction Dance Crew, hip hop?s answer to Fred Astaire; the unreal locking of Buddha Stretch and Tweetie in their robotic duet of seduction; the insane drops of the Flavor Group as the B-Boys waged a showdown with Capoeiristas?it was a close battle, but dare I say the B-Boys won? Attempts at bringing in Eastern influences were popular?lots of meditating B-Boys (and girls), a sight you surely don?t see too often on the street. Some misses, sure, but the fun kept coming. This was my first Hip Hop Dance Fest, and I?ll be back next year.

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