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Hip Hop Culture

What does hip hop mean? Is it the music with a chest-thumping beat? The rapid-fire lyrics rapped into a handheld mic? Gravity-defying dance steps? Writers turning walls into canvases with larger-than-life letters and illustrations? The answer is, all of the above—and more. Hip hop embraces these artistic elements, most definitely. But it has also blended and transcended them to become a means for seeing, celebrating, experiencing, understanding, confronting, and commenting on life and the world. Hip hop, in other words, is a way of living—a culture

Media Hip Hop: A Culture of Vision and Voice

The elements of hip hop came together in the Bronx borough of New York City in the early 1970s. From a whole lot of nothing—and a whole lot of imagination—hip hop took form.

  • Hip Hop Culture

Lesson The Poetics of Hip Hop

In this 9-12 lesson, students will analyze the rhythm, form, diction, and sound of hip hop and Shakespearean sonnets. Students will compare characteristics between Shakespeare’s work and the work of hip hop artists to create an original poem or lyrics.

  • Music
  • English & Literature
  • Grades 9-12
  • Hip Hop Culture

Media Javier Starks

Emcee, songwriter, and poet Javier Starks paves a unique path all his own with 100% curse-free Hip Hop music, showing the world that success can come without negativity. Join Javier in this video concert as he performs original songs with a live band and DJ.

  • Poetry & Lyrics
  • Young Artists
  • Hip Hop Culture

Media DJ 101

In this video series, turntablist Kuttin Kandi, one of the best battle DJs in the game, demonstrates the basics of her instrument.

  • Hip Hop Culture

Media What I Do

J. Period discusses the elements of research, collaboration, and performance that comprise his process of storytelling through music as a DJ and Producer.

  • Theater
  • Visual Arts
  • Technical Theater
  • Backstage
  • Jobs in the Arts

Media Double Dutch: Pick Up Your Feet!

Has it been a while since you’ve jumped rope? To get into the swing, find your old rope or unwind a length of clothesline. See what it feels like to jump again—on your own or with friends. One of the beauties of jumping rope? All you need is some space and a little rhythm and your body comes alive. This resource will provide you with some history, techniques, and opportunities to explore Double Dutch further.

  • Health & Physical Education
  • Hip Hop Culture

Media Hip Hop to da Head

This performance explores the Hip Hop dance and music movement including beat boxing, breaking, locking, floor work and top rock.

  • Hip Hop Culture

Media slamKC

Explore the performances of young slam poets. Musical, lyrical, and provocative, these original spoken word pieces are supported by Hip Hop giants Questlove and Black Thought.

  • Comedy & Performance Art
  • Poetry & Lyrics
  • Young Artists
  • Sensitive Themes

Kendrick Lamar: Q&A at ݮƵѰapp

Before his sold-out performance of To Pimp a Butterfly with the National Symphony Orchestra, Hip Hop artist Kendrick Lamar answers questions from young D.C. artists.

  • Discussion/Spoken Word
  • Backstage
  • Young Artists
  • Hip Hop Culture
  • Hip Hop

Common: Q&A at ݮƵѰapp

From the Kennedy Center Education archives: Actor and Hip Hop artist Common answers questions from young D.C. artists.

  • Discussion/Spoken Word
  • Backstage
  • Young Artists
  • Hip Hop Culture
  • Hip Hop

Meet the Artists: Brian & Marvin Quijada

Brian Quijada is a Salvadoran-American actor, playwright, musician, and a solo performer, Marvin Quijada is a Chicago based actor/clown/mime/iOS musician.

  • Music
  • Theater
  • Young Artists
  • Hip Hop Culture
  • Hip Hop
  • Performances for Young Audiences

The Flying Legs Crew: Venezuelan B-Boys

This video series captures the sights and sounds of Hip Hop artists from Venezuela visiting New York, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.

  • Dance
  • Young Artists
  • Hip Hop Culture
  • Latin American
  • Hip Hop

How to Rap with Harold "Fyütch" Simmons

Learn how to rap about the easiest subject out there...yourself! In this video, rapper and educator Harold "Fyütch" Simmons will guide you through counting beats and creating rhymes in order to create a rap. By the end of the video, you’ll have an original introduction rap that you can perform for others!

  • Music
  • Poetry & Lyrics

How to Perform Spoken Word with Deborah Magdalena

Ever wonder about the difference between poetry and spoken word? In this video, you will learn how you can transform a poem, original or not, into an expressive spoken word performance. Watch as spoken word artist Deborah Magdalena breaks down an original poem to show how connection, vocalization, and movement can bring power to your words.

  • Theater
  • Poetry & Lyrics

Grooving and Moving with Alex Gossen

Ever felt like you just had trouble finding your groove? Dance teaching artist Alex Gossen breaks it down to help you find your internal rhythm and style. Feel confident on the dance floor and express yourself with your own special moves as you groove with Alex.

  • Dance
  • Hip Hop Culture