The HYBRIDS OF HIPHOP (HOH) Story
National Champion – HipHop International Philipines 2018 Dance Championship
Theirs is a story of underdogs beating the odds, rising from countless failures, undaunted by endless challenges, bearing the mark of an unyielding resolve that makes them what they are – champions.
Their road to the national championship was not easy.
Their road to the world championship will not be easy either. But they wage on. And this time, they will not be by their lonesome. YOU will be part of the story of the Hybrids of Hiphop as they take on the world stage,dancing for their individuals dreams, for the hopes of their families, for their community, for Bislig, for an entire island, for a nation, and for anyone who fails but gets stronger and better each time. Their story is our story. Their hopes are our hopes. Their dance is our dance.
They have been told to simply stop dancing, being consistent bottom-dwellers in their first three years of competing in the Mindanao regionals of the HHI-Philippines Dance Championships. In fact, in 2017, they placed last in the said competition, and went home to their hometown to the painful bashing of people who have known of their exploits in the dancing world.
Their families have admonished them against pursuing dancing. Hours and hours of training meant they were out of their homes on many occasions. Competitions meant missed classes in school. The intensity of training left them tired on most days. What do they get out of dancing, they were asked.
It was difficult. It would have been an easy choice to quit.
Not for one with the heart of a champion. The boys of the Hybrids of Hiphop did not quit. Dancing gave them meaning. And dance they did.
After that painful experience in 2017 of having been branded as “grand slam losers,” the group went under the radar – they did not join competitions. They did not want to join any other competition but the HHI Philippines Dance Championships. Eyes on the prize. They trained everyday. They gave it their all to make a comeback in the HHI stage.
The current team was cut from a pool of aspiring champions from HOH. Discipline was necessary – no missed trainings, no tardiness, no excuses.
The 2018 routine started in October 2017. It was put together for four months by a dedicated coaching team and a passionate dance group of six young guys. On February 17, 2018, HOH made the best of comebacks in the Mindanao regionals by bagging the championship and earning their place in the nationals in Manila.
That win in the Mindanao regionals was called by some as a “stroke of luck,” short of saying HOH was not a deserving winner or was not in the league of champions.
No criticism can break the spirit of HOH. In the succeeding months, they focused on the national finals, hoping to land a place in the top three so that they can compete in the world championships.
All of the six dancers of HOH have never been to Manila. Most of them do not have the resources to travel to the national capital for the national finals. Acquiring passports, a requirement for national finalists, was not even easy.
One member had to choose between an experience of a lifetime, or leaving the competition to pursue his college internship and graduate. Some were close to giving up due to financial difficulties, disheartened at being told that spending a lot to go to Manila only to dance was too much.
By now the story is clear. What is there to stop them?
On April 23, 2018, they topped the Adult Division of the HHI Philippines Dance Championships, earning the title of National Champions, and leading the Philippine contingent to the world championships in Arizona, USA in August.
Their every dance move when they compete on the world stage in August 2018 will be fired up by all hardships that they went through. Let’s light that fire even more by being part of an amazing journey.
Your support for world-class Filipino talent will go a long way. You will complete the HOH story. Together, we will create inspiring stories, one dance step at a time.
Dreamers, passionate dancers, champions comprise the Hybrids of Hiphop (HOH) Team that will compete in Arizona, USA in August 2018.
• Norbing Tesipao has been dancing for eight years now. He chose to forego his college internship to train and compete with HOH at the HHI stage. He believes his choice will pay off.
• Raven Simporios notes self-improvement because of dancing. He has since learned to discipline himself, staying away from vices and the bad things that come with it.
• Klench Leonard Baldoviso becomes happy when he dances. He keeps himself happy despite the problems by dancing for nine years now.
• Jojay Boy Duay is the youngest in the team, at 15. His family situation – a broken family, with lots of financial constraints – becomes bearable because of dance.
• Asfel Dela Pena had to struggle for the nine years that he is dancing. School and dance have always been in tension, but he hopes to finally find his groove as he shows to all the rest the good things that come out of his dancing.
• Kivhen Mejores has to likewise deal with the constant tension between dance and his family and school. However, he gets motivated with the great things that he can achieve with dancing. He uses this motivation to push himself to be the son that his family wants him to become.
• Liza Laput-Lugsanay is the team's guidance counselor, mentor, coordinator and assistant coach. She is a supporter of her hubby's advocacy.
• Bernie Lugsanay is the guy that started it all. His advocacy is to help, mold and guide young talents become world class performers. It is a dream that started 10 years ago. He is the founder, coach and mentor of Hybrids of Hiphop