Nick Power talks hip hop shows Between Tiny Cities & Two Crews

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Nick Power has choreographed and created two hip-hop break shows showing at Adelaide Festival this March. Two Crews, which we’ve spoken about previously was performed in its Australian premiere at Sydney Festival in January and we loved it. Between Tiny Cities will have its Australian premiere at Adelaide Festival. We spoke to Nick Power about the two shows and about hip-hop culture.


You have two shows at Adelaide Festival in March: Two Crews with hip hop dance crews from Australia and from France and Between Two Cities which brings together Aaron Lim from Darwin and Erak Mith from Phnom Penh. Where did your inspiration for these two shows come from?

In some ways the inspiration for both these shows are connected, I first thought of the idea of bringing two separate crews together while in Phnom Penh in the initial stages of developing Between Tiny Cities.  Although Between Tiny Cities ended up being a duet it was initiated by Aaron and Erak’s separate crews (D* City Rockers & Tiny Toones respectively) meeting and jamming with each other.  Although they are very different shows I feel as though they are forged in the same fire.

hip hop
Between Tiny Cities
Image: Thoeun Veassna


How long have you been involved in hip-hop? 

Around 25 years.


What attracts you to/interests you about hip hop?

Hip Hop gave me an avenue for creativity, I had all this wild creative energy when I was young, I liked the freedom hip hop offered me to create… whether it be as a Graffiti Writer or a B*boy.  It gives me a strong community to feel a part of and to contribute to.  I find the dance styles of hip hop endlessly exciting and interesting, I love taking this energy and culture into the theatre, it opens it out into a new audience and challenges peoples pre-conceptions about the form.


In Two Crews you have worked with all-female Parisian crew Lady Rocks and Sydney group Riddim Nation. How did you hear about Lady Rocks? 

The Australia Council gave me a three month residency in Paris in 2012.  There is a thriving hip hop dance theatre scene in France so I was able to see many shows, meet other choreographers in my form and be immersed in it all.  One of the key connections I made was with a B*Girl named Valentine Ramos – who is a member of Lady Rocks.  I flew her to Australia in to judge a B*Girl battle I helped organise, we kept in touch and when the time was right I was able to connect with her crew and begin the collaboration that became Two Crews.

hip hop
Two Crews
Credit: Create Lamine


What are the challenges in choreographing a style of dance which is usually uninhibited and depends on the mood of the dancer or can be reactionary if in a battle?

I try to take this energy and instinct into the theatre through working a lot with structured improvisation.  I feel as though the dancers are also interested in exploring new ground and textures that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to in a more traditional hip hop space.  In this way taking it into the theatre opens the form up to new possibilities, I think this is a really exciting space.


How do the styles differ from country to country?

Each country has its own style and flavour.


What are the key differences between the two shows?

Between Tiny Cities is more intimate and personal while Two Crews has a more raucous feel.

hip hop
Image: Pippa Samaya
Between Tiny Cities


Do you need to have an interest in hip-hop dance and culture to appreciate these shows?

Absolutely not.  Our audiences are really diverse and we love it that way.  The shows are built on the backbone of hip hop culture and are really accessible to anyone who loves dance … or just a good night out…


Why should people come to see these shows?

You will see high level hip hop dancers from across the world use their skills and culture to compete, connect and rock the house.


Two Crews was also performed at Sydney Festival in January 2020. Will the shows be performed in any other cities?

We’re coming to Adelaide in March and then off to Brisbane festival in September!  And hopefully more to come.




Two Crews

WHEN: 10 – 14 March various times

WHERE: Space Theatre, Adelaide Festival Centre

HOW MUCH: $49 for adults with discounts for Friends of Adelaide Festival, concession card holders, under 30s and students



Between Tiny Cities

WHEN: 28 Feb – 4 March (except Tuesday 3 March) at various times

WHERE: Lion Arts Factory, Adelaide

HOW MUCH: $39 with discounts for Friends of the Festival, Concession card holders, under 30s and students


Do you like hip hop?



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Sydney Festival 2020: must-see French and francophone shows!

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Sydney Festival 2020

Sydney Festival 2020 starts today and runs until 26 January. Among the shows programmed, there are a few with French and francophone links to see. Here they are!


Two Crews

8 – 12 January $39-$45

Image: Timothée Lejolivet

Lady Rocks, Parisian break group solely made up of  women dance in a battle against Australian company Riddim Nation in this show choreographed by Nick Power.


Whereas Lady Rocks specialises in combative and complex choreographed battles, Riddim Nation mixes Pacificka, African and Asian influences in its eclectic and cheeky style.


You can read our interview with Lady Rocks here.         



8 – 12 January $60-$70

Image: Yannick Grandmont

Fly Pan Am, Canadian electro-rock group will play live music for Canadian avant-garde choreographer Dana Gingras’s dance show with her dance troupe Animals of Distinction.


In Frontera, the question is explored as to in this world in which the human body is subject to more and more invasive surveillance and treatment, what space remains for the undisciplined, ungovernable body?


With synchronised and complex projections and lights by United Visual Artists (UVA), and live music by Fly Pan Am, 10 dancers explore ideas of inclusion and exclusion; their bodies are mapped in high resolution, their destinies unresolved.


Read our interview with Fly Pan Am here.


Forget Me Not

14 – 26 January $79

Image: Dahlia Katz

Ronnie Burkett, marionette master, returns to Sydney Festival, this time with his show Forget Me Not.


In Forget Me Not, you find yourself in the new now, a world where written words are forbidden and putting pen to paper is a powerful act of defiance. For those determined to compose or write a heartfelt declaration, there is one way, but it requires you to take a perilous journey to a secret camp to trouver “She, the guardian of the lost hand”, the last to retain the knowledge of reading and writing.


Absurd, romantic and provocative, Forget Me Not is a tender call to arms and a rich theatrical love letter to ourselves in these more and more uncivilised times.


We spoke to Ronnie Burkett back before his 2018 Sydney Festival performances. Read the interview here.


Romances Inciertos : un autre Orlando

21-26 January $60-$70

Image: Jose Caldeira

Inspired by Virigina Woolf’s Orlando, the Elizabethan courtier who changes sex and lives for more than 300 years, this opera-ballet show from François Chaignaud, choreographer, dancer, singer is a love letter to centuries of Spanish culture and an odyssey about a shape-shifting body which crosses centuries.


In this show, François Chaignaud and four musicians playing period instruments will traverse Spanish history from the Golden Age to the 21st century, in a theatrical mix of Baroque, cabaret, flamenco and gender play.


François Chaignaud gives life to three characters – luminaries from drama, poetry and Spanish folklore: Doncella Guerrera, who leaves for war dressed as a man, San Miguel, the ambiguous archangel from the poet Garcia Lorca and Tarara, free spirited dancer and Anadulsian Roma disappointed by love and who hides a secret androgyny.


Which shows are you seeing at Sydney Festival 2020?

Sydney Festival 2020



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