Today was hip-hop aesthetics day in Idris’s class, and it was kee-razy. We spent a lot of time discussing the categories we use to judge hip-hop music, the history behind it, the future of hip-hop, and, of course, hip-hop as a form of theatre. That’s right, hip-hop theatre. We read an essay by a performer named Danny Hoch who had some points to make about the aesthetics of hip-hop (rap, breakdancing, graffiti, and DJ’ing) and how they transfer into the realm of traditional Western theatre.
We moved on from discussing hip-hop to watching crazy variations of it, including a spoken word/rap piece about being short and white, a near-rap called The Era of the Goon, and this amazing performance with two rappers and a woman who could belt like a strip of leather. This of course led into Idris giving us half an hour to write our own piece with essentially no guidelines, and there were some great things that came out of this. We’re supposed to have a finished bit by 7 tonight, when we all go see Zadie Smith speak. I have no idea what I’m doing.
It’s so much fun though.