Chong hits hip hop heights


Chong (second from left) dances to victory with her five-person crew, The Miniotics. Photo by Gian Barbarona

Chong for the win! Mickey ‘16 and her dance crew win at Hip Hop International. 

Mickey Chong ’16 and her dance crew won Hip Hop International’s (HHI) 2015 National competition this August. The competition, taking place in San Diego and lasting three days, welcomed crews from across the country. Chong and her crew were on Varsity, meaning that all members were between 16 and 18. Dances are scored on performance, creativity, spacing, showmanship, street presentation and audience appeal.

Chong and her dance crew went from not thinking they had much of a chance of winning to being the champions or in Chong’s words: “lowest of the low to the highest of the high.”

Chong’s crew, the Miniotics, started choreographing their routine about two months before the competition, which according to Chong, is out of the ordinary.

“Most groups begin choreography half a year in advance, so we were definitely rushed,” she said.

The dancers practiced Sunday and Monday for six and four hours respectively, and for the two weeks before the event, they met everyday for three hours. The group chose six songs they thought would work well together, mixed them, and then got to choreographing.

Although the team had to incorporate two new members and rush through choreographing, they made it to the finals in the competition and, according to Chong, felt massive pressure in the final round.

All was going as planned on stage until one of the members of the crew’s shoe fell off. In the heat of the moment, another member decided to throw the lost shoe offstage, which resulted in a point deduction. The Miniotics thought that they had lost the competition after the shoe fiasco.

Chong described high emotions backstage as two people were crying because they were certain they had lost on that performance.

To the group’s surprise, the Miniotics won due to their creative choreography and spirit. Chong described the feeling as “unbelievable, exhilarating and phenomenal” especially considering she has been dancing for years. Chong said that this victory has been a dream of hers for a long time.