Hip Hop originated from primarily black and Latino communities in the U.S. whose lives were dominated by poverty and violence. As a result, Hip Hop emerged as a mode of expression, representing the voices of those who felt silenced. It is an art form that amplifies the voices of the marginalised. We are so grateful for black history, culture and communities for bringing us this art form that we love so much today. This makes Hip Hop, music and expression such a powerful tool for supporting marginalised communities today, including older adults.
In this blog post, we hear from three different dance teachers at The Blair Academy. They reflect on how black history impacts their work with older adults and at the social enterprise.
“As someone from Hong Kong, I had little understanding of and completely underestimated the effect that black culture has had on the UK identity and ethos. In one of the care homes I teach at, black culture comes up in many forms at many times. Whether it be the requests for high life and Ghanian music, to American funk and soul, to the always-popular reggae, I am so grateful to hear stories of people’s backgrounds, where the care home residents have instilled in them the pride of being black and British.” - Hoi
“I’m so proud that through the work we do, we are able to listen to people’s rich histories and celebrate them. It’s a real honour for me to be continually learning about Black History and how Black communities birthed the incredible art form that we use in our care settings every day. I love getting to know the people we work with so we can help affirm their identity and connect them with other people who share lived experiences with them.” - Charlie
“To hear is to feel,
To feel is to move,
Mumma Africa is calling,
Through our ancestral moves.
Joined dots of freedom, dance styles,
Expressionism and people,
Let the music guide you
Through the ongoing sequel,
Of enjoying dance
Whilst remembering the importance of the history, dance and people!” - Sarah