I made it to Ken Swift’s weekly breakdance fundamentals class last night at PMT Studios, despite being dead tired from just returning from the Global Kids retreat that morning. Ken Swift is a legend in the breakdance world, an original innovator of most of the basic steps that make up b-boying today. It was a fun and challenging class, with just eight students learning both some foundational b-boy moves and the history of those steps — the baby freeze, helicopter, charleston rocks, floor spins and a few others I've already forgotten.
One of the students was a visiting b-girl from Tokyo who barely spoke any English. My friend Monica in the class tells me that she is from a prominent crew in Japan. Another crew was visiting from Europe and was hoping to at least watch Ken’s class with us. After class, Ken hung out and chatted, and posed for a pictures with anyone who wanted. He’s that kind of guy.
My buddy Trevor and I were talking after class about how lucky we are to living in New York, taking classes with perhaps the last pioneer of this unique dance form still actively practicing and teaching it. People come from all over the world just to meet Ken Swift, and we are learning from him in our own backyard.
There are so many stories like this in New York. I feel so fortunate to be living in this place, in this time, and be able to do all the crazy stuff that I do.