Thank You for Your Interest in
the 19th Annual San Francisco International Hip Hop DanceFest!

Press / Media Contact: Mona Baroudi




“Crazy high energy abounds whenever the San Francisco International Hip Hop DanceFest takes to the stage,” – San Francisco Chronicle, 2015

“For 17 years, the formidable San Francisco International Hip-Hop DanceFest has helped to put and keep the Bay Area front and center when it comes to street dance in all its many forms.” – KQED, 2015

“These days, hip-hop dance has secured a spot on the proscenium, and no one has done more to elevate the art form than Micaya” – San Jose Mercury News, 2014

“Genre-stretching revelations and a nonstop beat are guaranteed.” – San Francisco Chronicle, 2014

“Curated by legend-in-her-own-time Micaya, the festival takes hip-hop out of its customary competitive arena and on to the stage of the Palace of Fine Arts — which might sound like an incongruous setting for a gritty street art form, but the packed house on Sunday night hollered their appreciation as if we were all hanging out together on the corner of Mission and 24th scoping out a sidewalk battle.” –Huffington Post, 2014


Let the Rhythm Hit ’em – Swift Moves and New Feats at the San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest -By Rita Felciano

“The exuberance bouncing off the walls of the Palace of Fine Arts at the Nov. 22 opening of the 10th annual San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest probably kept the audience in a buoyant mood well beyond the theater. These young dancers — and hip-hop is still primarily a young person’s art — presented a show that was sassy, skilled, and a hoot to boot. CONTINUED


10th S.F. Hip Hop DanceFest Locks, Pops, Spins -By Rachel Howard, Chronicle Dance Correspondent

“The San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest’s audience isn’t shy about its predilections: The mob screams for a fat beat, claps along when a crew breaks out old-school James Brown or vintage ’80s Janet Jackson and shouts “work it out!” when a dancer starts slamming. But like any crowd that knows how to have a good time, the festival’s fans rarely err in taste – and neither does founder, director and producer Micaya. CONTINUED


Merry Milestone -By Allan Ulrich © 2008

“If the kids in your neighborhood are trading their pointe shoes for high tops, or abandoning tutus for Tupac, or jettisoning tiaras for hoodies, perhaps Micaya is to blame. The single-named choreographer last weekend produced the 10th anniversary of her San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest at the Palace of Fine Arts, and at the opening Friday evening (Nov. 21), the full audience and voluble audience response suggested that there may be one kind of dance attraction that remains impervious to a recession. When crowds linger in a lobby after a show, you know you’ve got a hit. CONTINUED

ASIAN WEEK 2008 – Arts-Entertainment, Events

SF Hip Hop Dancefest Is a Global Affair -By Dino-Ray Ramos

“The San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest is not your ordinary showcase of hip-hop dance. It’s a global extravaganza of artistic talent that happens to center around the hip-hop culture.

Now in its 10th year, the celebrated DanceFest hits the stage for another year of pop lockin’ and B-boyin’ from Nov. 21 to 23 at the Palace of Fine Arts. The stage will be stormed by 22 different hip-hop dance companies from as far as the Philippines and South Africa. There will also be a screening of the hip-hop dance documentary, Everything Remains Raw by Moncell Durden and a performance by Popin’ Pete from the legendary Electric Boogaloos. Even the roller boys of Breaksk8 from MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew will take the stage to fuel the world’s growing love for hip-hop dance. CONTINUED


Hip Hop Dance Fest -By Rachel Howard

“Meanwhile, across town, bass was pounding through the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, and the San Francisco Hip Hop Dance Fest was pumping. Hot tip for 2008’s 10th anniversary edition, which founder and inspired producer Micaya is already cooking: The earlier you arrive, the more you get to watch of the opening freestyle, and the more you realize that the soul of hip-hop is wit.

Every group on Program A had its distinctive style: from the Chicago FootworKINGz with its mad, fast steps to Oakland’s Neopolitan convincingly merging Afro-Caribbean forms with funk. New York’s Mop Top staged a “Wizard of Oz” with master of popping Buddha Stretch as the Tin Man, and Colorado’s Elements of Motion won my vote for overall excellence, marrying unreal B-boy head spins to consummate theatricality.

Darnell Carroll’s Funk Beyond Control flooded the stage with the freshest, most spirited kids you’ll ever see in a Robin Hood-inspired roof-raiser.”


SF Hip Hop DanceFest – The Local Crews Get Vital -By Rita Felciano

Tuesday November 14, 2006

“PREVIEW The San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest, now in its eighth year, is still a hot event and one of the most encouraging local dance developments. As word has spread that this is something to thrill about, even for those who are not club scene habitus, the festival has gained a growing crossover audience. With the increasing sophistication of its stage presentations, hip-hop dance is now as at home in studios as it is vital in the streets. One of hip-hop’s most appealing aspects is its embrace of individual dignity. Though much of the dance’s language has an undertone of toughness (crews “battle” at meets, not unlike teams at sports competitions), respect for self and others are deeply ingrained in the art. Yet hip-hop dancers are also highly individualistic, developing personal styles just as artists have always done. While the Bay Area hip-hop scene is strong at the festival, with 2005 World Hip-Hop Dance Champions Funk beyond Control performing this week in Program A, SF Funkanometry performing in Program B, and Nu-Origin performing in both programs, you will also want to see what’s happening elsewhere. This sense of discovery is part of the fun for audiences as well as dancers.

Ten out the 24 participants are not local, including the duo Sanrancune from Paris (Program A) and the all-female quintet Haus Frau from Denmark (Program B). Artistic director Micaya is doing for hip-hop what Brechin Flournoy did for Butoh in the ’90s in San Francisco: putting the art and the place on the map. (Rita Felciano)”


6th Annual San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest -By Allan Ulrich

Nov 19, 2004

“The most unnecessary advisory of the evening? “Please turn off all cell phones and pagers – if you still use them.” Ferget it! Nobody could possibly have heard these beeping electronic devices amid the pounding beat and the constant applause and screams during the opening concert of the sixth annual San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest, which opened Thursday (Nov. 18) at the Palace of Fine Arts Theater. The audience was youngish, exuberant and substantial in size, belying the dance community’s dreary assertion that nobody comes to dance events during the week. They will come if they want to see you. And hip hop, street moves rising cautiously to the level of art, is where it’s at these days.

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 festival’s press material alerts us that hip hop has already advanced to its third generation and draws the distinction between Old School, New School and True School and we may expect to see representatives of all those schools this weekend. The festival promises a mix of headliners, youth groups and professional hip hop and dance companies. A group jam opened the evening on a casual note, but Thursday’s entertainment was definitely slanted towards youth. The 12 groups included Destiny Arts Youth Performance Company, Generation 2, Traci Bartlow/StarChild!, SoulForce Dance Company, Funkanometry SF Dance Company (love that name!), Culture Shock Oakland, City Shock, The Living Word Project, Chain Reaction Dance Crew, Moptop Music & Movement, The Flavor Group and New Style Motherlode.

Performances throughout radiated enormous conviction and enthusiasm, but not every presentation worked as choreography. At this point, one expects an evolution in hip hop. One expects dancers to use hip hop, not merely for the pleasures of the vocabulary, but as a language through which other issues may be explored. We saw a beautiful example of that at the top of the program with Rennie HarrisThe Day Before Hip Hop, performed by Oakland’s Destiny Arts Youth Performance Company. Harris, a leader in the field, runs the Puremovement Company out of Philadelphia, and what he seems to have proposed here is a doomsday scenario about a politically committed, but religiously devout society done in by a horrible event; 9/11 ran through my mind. The implication was that goodness has nothing to do with it; prayer will only get you so far. Generation 2 offered more conventional fare, arms slicing through air, big smiles and unisons inflected with little kicks. In Testimony, Micaya’s own troupe, SoulForce Dance Company, exploited the possibilities of silhouette and spiced the piece with interludes of spectacular break dancing.

For pure sensation, there was the technical pizzazz of Onsome, from the Chain Reaction Dance Crew – 10 men in identical black and white duds, fanning out from a straight line into a series of dazzling unisons, tempered by satirical machismo gestures; I could have sat through this one again. Worth seeing, too, were Buddha Stretch and Tweetie (of Moptop Music and Movement); their Buddha & the Bird emerged a delightful essay in robotics, timed down to a millisecond. In the irresistible category: The Flavor Group. Prem Kumta’s Capoeiristas and B-Boys – A Tribute to the Circle, a demonstration of martial arts that yielded some of the most viscerally appealing moments on any dance stage this season.

Earlier, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, backed by a 1960s rock combo, warned us that “when a culture evolves, it becomes an industry,” and in a sense, he was right. I thought of all those sweat suits and fancy shoes on stage; tutus and pointe shoes never cost this much. Oakland’s Traci Bartlow never quite made a statement in her Water solo. In The Toy Store, Culture Shock Oakland presented an ambitious, but only partially successful dream structure, involving a huge cast popping and locking through the night. Ambition also felled New Style Motherlode whose Lightyears was a mishmash of outlandish, Geoffrey Holder-like costumes, sinuous Asian posturing and Broadway mechanics, something like The Small House of Uncle ZZ.

Nevertheless, the San Francisco Hip Hop Dance Fest 2004 provides at least three thrills for every disappointment. I don’t know any other dance festival that can make a similar claim.”