It’s funny how artistic we become when our hearts are broken.

- Hotel Books, I Always Thought I Would Be Okay (via aestheticintrovert)


the older i get

the more i realize the value of privacy

of cultivating your circle and only letting certain people in

you can be open, honest, and real while still understanding not everyone deserves a seat at the table of your life




So I watched this music video, and this is in fact completely untrue. There are many scenes in which black/brown girls are casted.
One could conceivably argue that  any white star who features twerking in a music video is automatically being exploitative.
However, that was not my perception of this video in particular. It actually appeared to me the director took pains to portray a variety of dance styles (ballet, interpretive dance, rhythmic gymnastics, break dancing, twerking, cheerleading, etc.) all as equally valid art forms. Every performing group in the video includes a variety of ethnicities. I think I did actually see a black/brown dancer in the ballet troupe, though it’s difficult to tell. Look in the rear left of this gif:

We don’t know if they cast individual dancers or hired a dance troupe, so if black women are underrepresented that might say more about the dance troupe’s selection practices than the video director’s casting practices.
All the styles of dance, ballet or otherwise are presented in the same fashion — talented professionals being brilliant + Taylor Swift being endearingly incompetent. The black women in the video aren’t portrayed as Taylor’s dancing accessories, but rather as experts in their style:

Moreover, at the end of the video there’s a sequence showing all the different professionals being silly and dancing in a non-choreographed manner, thereby humanizing them, showing they exist outside of their role as dancers in Taylor’s video:

I think if we interpret the twerking scenes in this video as demeaning, that says more about our cultural perception of black women than it does about this particular video’s specific portrayal of black women. 

Anyone from any culture is welcome to dance hip-hop. You are not however allowed to do random movements to hip-hop music and purport to be dancing or choreographing hip-hop.

You also cannot say that you are evolving the dance when your movements are not derived from the cultural invention itself. That’s like me saying I’m evolving ballet by just playing Mozart and jumping up and down. If my movements are not rooted in the foundations of ballet I cannot say I’m dancing ballet.

Over a century ago there were those who created an entirely new art-form that stemmed from ballet, they did not however call it “lyrical ballet” they called it modern dance. Because it is NOT ballet.

"Lyrical hip-hop" is NOT hip-hop.

Dance team choreo (unless rooted in real hip-hop) is NOT hip-hop.

Random jerky movements to hip-hop music is NOT hip-hop.

Also, there is no such thing as “old school” hip-hop moves. It is HIP-HOP! Is a pirouette an “old school” ballet move? Is a pas de bourree “old school” jazz? Or are these foundational movement vocabulary aspects of these arts? Let’s use our brains people. There’s an entire generation of people out there who are seeking guidance and dance knowledge. Let’s not disappointment them!


a filipino b-girl with style rising from our nation's capital who enjoys harry potter, sunny days, palm trees, boba, bboy practice, shopping, and anything that makes her laugh

holla at me.

Patience. Perseverance. Persistence. Future Shock 2011-2012
✯ ✯ ✯