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Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Diversity at Into the Hoods press night

Is the public's interest in Diversity waning?
When I heard about this it made me mad: I got a message on my phone saying "Diversity are here [at the Into the Hoods press night] and they brought a film crew."

What's wrong with Diversity watching a show? Nothing actually, I'm sure they get invited to many a show. Observing doesn't hurt anyone. It's the cameras - they came into the auditorium with a film crew, meaning an unavoidable huddle of DV fanatics.

There are ways of publicising an event to get it into the gossip pages, one of them is to invite celebrities along (dancers are NOT celebrities!). It worked when Sadler's Wells invited a press huddle for the press night of Blaze: The Streetdance Sensation  at the Peacock Theatre.

The link between Diversity and Into the Hoods is as follows: Akai is in Into the Hoods; Ashley Banjo of Diversity fame stood drop-jawed at Akai's performance in Got to Dance; Got to Dance series two is auditioning and the interest has to tick over until it airs some point in winter. In the mean time publicity dictates the direction where their careers go (judging opportunities, TV spin offs, and so forth).

But the way it appears is, regardless of the relation to Akai being in this summer's production, by turning up with a film crew (complete with lighting) at someone else's show turns a LOT of attention on you and not on the show itself. Rather than focussing attention on what's happening on stage the attention is diverted away from it.

Why would you want to turn up at another company's event and make it your own? Hmm. Attention seeking? It seems slipping in through the back door and taking your seat is so out of fashion (the Queen is renowned for doing this when visiting the West End to watch shows).
Instead its all about the hype surrounding the celebrity, getting people to pay attention to you and doing it in front of hundreds of people when the original dancing was in fact on stage.

Like lambs to the slaughter fans ended up flooding Diversity rather than recognising Zoonation's contribution to the arts: over an hour's worth of hip hop theatre. People paid for tickets to see the show. Some may feel they got better value for money with a few celebrities showing up

Consider that Akai, last night's main attraction, turned up to Boy Blue's A Nite With Da Bratz a fortnight ago and didn't roll up with a team, just his parents and relatives. What does that say about people recognising entities better than them?

Diversity don't realise how fortunate they are to have won Britain's Got Talent against the choreographic might of Flawless. The keeping up appearances since they won Britain's Got Talent panders between securing successful commercial futures - appearing in the Streetdance 3D movie; Got to Dance judging; Dance4Life sponsorships, etc - to overshadowing others.

For the sake of the future of original street dance, Diversity and the media circus that surround them has to stop.

We've had our  say, now have yours. You can comment using the box below.

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