Bobby Mileage teaches a group of about 20 young dancers some hip hop techniques. The world renowned dancer who has worked with Mariah Carey

Famous dancer gives lesson to local students

Life lessons were shared interwoven with a form of dance that has a short history as a world renowned hip hop dance star showed some young dancers a thing or two.

Life lessons were shared interwoven with a form of dance that has a short history as a world renowned hip hop dance star showed some young dancers a thing or two.

Bobby Mileage was in Red Deer at the Pound It Studios, 5809 51st Ave., for a few hours Sunday giving a lesson to local students at the dance studio.

“The best part is you go somewhere where you think there would never be hip hop,” said Mileage. “The best feeling is seeing kids who are really into it and having so much fun. It’s the whole reason I started was I had so much fun.”

Born Bobby Barnette, he got his nickname Mileage as an 18-year-old. A love for hip hop dancing led him to drive from his hometown of Boston to New York every weekend so that he could dance.

Now he has become world renowned for his dancing and has done work with artists such as Mariah Carey, Will Smith and Missy Elliott.

“What we want to get across is this dance should be respected also,” said Mileage, adding that while it is a younger dance, there is a unique history to it that he likes to share with younger dance students.

“This is something, it’s not just get up and do whatever you want, there are specific moves and it has techniques that go along with it.”

Rico Martinez, owner of Pound It Studios, was thrilled to have Mileage in town on Sunday to show his students some moves.

“He’s a legend in hip hop culture and dance culture,” said Martinez. “We brought him to teach the kids some foundational and hip hop moves.

“I think they did great, of course they need to practice more. They have a lot of fun and that’s what’s important.”

Mileage also took some time to talk with the kids and tell them all about the hard work it takes to succeed in hip hop dancing, but related it back to working hard in school.

“The kids had great energy,” said Mileage. “Of course they just learned some of the things so they didn’t know some things, but their energy and they kept trying.”

Mileage is running a dance competition and camp this summer in Calgary. For more information visit www.ctgproject.com.

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