HMTCA-Trinity Hip Hop Collaboration with Internationally Renowned Choreographer Amirah Sackett

This semester, Rebecca Pappas, Visiting Assistant Professor of Theater and Dance organized a hip hop dance collaboration between Trinity College and Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy. Amirah Sackett, an internationally renowned B-Girl and choreographer who explores Muslim identity through hip hop dance, was named as headlining Artist for the 14th Annual Trinity International Hip Hop Festival and Rebecca saw an opportunity for collaboration.

Through a grant offered by Urban Educational Initiatives, Rebecca saw an opportunity to bring together the Theater and Dance Department, HMTCA, and the Hip Hop Festival by inviting Amirah Sackett to collaborate with Trinity College students and Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (HMTCA) students to prepare a piece for the Hip Hop Festival and the Spring Dance Concert. At the start of the collaboration, guest choreographer Amirah Sackett and Trinity College Visiting Lecturer in Theater & Dance Brandon Couloute (pictured left) offered hip hop Master Classes. There were four classes for HMTCA students (3 with Brandon and 1 with Amirah) and a fifth public Master Class of 50 people– both Trinity College students and community members. 

The Master Classes were a perfect lead in to the International Hip Hop Festival. If there’s one thing that brings together the Hartford and Trinity College communities it seems to be hip hop.

After arriving on Sunday March 24th, guest choreographer Amirah Sackett ran 3 hour intensive rehearsals from 7-10PM for 5 days straight at Trinity Commons with her dancers Jacqueline Kromash ‘19, Gaby Gomez ‘22, Sarah Zhu ‘22, Nicole Saltzman ‘22 and Danicia Brown from HMTCA. We were lucky to get a sneak preview of the performance and grab a few photos of rehearsal. At the end of the week, the dancers debuted their performance “Barzakh” at the 14th Annual Trinity International Hip Hop Festival on March 29th– and yes, the crowd loved it.

Brandon continued to prepare the dancers for their second performance in Trinity’s Spatial Harmonies Spring Dance Concert, which is free and open to the public on Friday April 26th and Saturday April 27th. We hope to see you there.

Thank you again to Rebecca Pappas, Brandon Couloute, HMTCA, and Urban Educational Initiatives for making the academic collaboration possible.