The giant telecommunications company, MTN, demonstrated, over the weekend, that whatever, the talent of the Nigerian youth, it can be put to use and worked to bring global acclaim. Such were the talent of the over a score of break-dance crews who participated in the MTN Battle of the Year 2014, which came to an end on Sunday with “619 Crew” emerging the overall champions.
At the Indoor Sports Hall of the Nigeria’s most cosmopolitan university, UNILAG, the mesmerizing skills, precision and team work exhibited by all the contesting crews were a sheer delight to behold. The students and corporate chiefs who turned out en masse to get maximum entertainment were highly impressed, as evident by their continuous cheers, applauses and roars. The guest performances by popular artistes and MTN ambassador, Banky W., alongside gifted rapper, Mode 9, Oga Boss, IllBliss and many others were among the sparkles that lit up the evening.
Four crews had made the cut to battle for a place in the finals of the B-Boy category but only the “619 Crew” and “Squad One Machinery” did enough to make it through. With amazing body-twisting, fleet-footed flips and acrobatic displays, notable crew members like Nzemeke Franklyn, Obiora Francis, Nwachukwu Jeremiah were too brilliant for the opposing Squad One Machinery. It was clear a victory for the Lagos-based crew and they will be on their way to Braunschweig, Germany, in October, to represent Nigeria at the International Battle of the Year competition.
Speaking with a member of the winning crew, Obiora Francis, he said, amid tears of joy, “This is, really, really, the best moment of my time”. He continued, “I have always dreamt of taking my dance skills to the international stage, it’s just amazing it’s happening now”.
The MTN Battle of the Year is a youth culture event driven by the dance element of hip-hop where break-dance crews engage in competitive dance to determine the best break-dance crew that will represent the country on the World stage.