Organization Spotlight: MacTown Breakers

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Mac-Town Breakers meet Wednesday and Sunday nights from 8:00 to 9:00 p.m. in the aerobics classroom to practice. Photo courtesy of MacTown Breakers

Brittany Dant

The Mac-Town Breakers is Mercer’s official break dance club and is open to all Mercer students, as well as the Macon community.

Mac-Town Breakers became a university-sanctioned club on Feb. 21, 2007, and they received their first Bear Grant on March 29 of the same year.

Although the Breakers are one of the newer organizations on campus, they seek to expand student knowledge and interest in the culture that surrounds break dancing.

The club’s Facebook page boasts that Mac-Town Breakers was created for “Bboys & Bgirls alike.” The student organization is for “all those interested in the art of breakdance and the culture that surrounds it.”

The Breakers study the art of break dancing in practice and in observation. Break dance is a street dance style that started as part of the hip-hop movement of the 1970s in the South Bronx, Manhattan and New York City.

Christina Nguyen, co-president of the Breakers, said there are currently a range of five to 10 students committed to the organization.

While it is one of the smaller clubs on campus, the Breakers make their presence known. In the past, they have held practice outside the Academic Resource Center so other students could see the power of break dancing.

Presently, the Breakers hold practice in the aerobics classroom located on the bottom floor of the University Center Gym across from the Intramural Courts. Nguyen said, “Practice is on Sunday from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Wednesday nights from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., but you do not have to have a background in break dancing to attend the meetings.”

There are four basic elements that form the foundations of break dancing: toprock, downrock or footwork, power moves and freezes. They sound difficult, but Nguyen explained they are not.

Nguyen said, “We usually start off with the fundamentals. Then the students can experiment with those fundamentals that we give them. If they want something they have seen somewhere else we can try to teach it to them.”

“We mostly try and teach that break dancing is not as complicated as it looks. You can build on the fundamentals we give you and you can do variations of the fundamentals that help with more advanced moves,” she said.

While the club is instructional, the members are concerned with students having fun.

Although the Breakers are a break dancing club, they do not have a set crew.“We do not compete against other crews, but we do go to jams so we can check out the scenes,” Nguyen said.

One such event is Breaklanta in Atlanta, which is one of the major annual hip-hop and break dancing events in the Southeast. The Breakers have also traveled to jams in Gwinnet County.

Nguyen has been interested in break dancing for a while, but she started dancing her junior year of high school.

“I did not want to start with break dancing right off and I realized no one could teach me, so I started with hip-hop. But then I came to Mercer and found the Mac-Town Breakers,” Nguyen said.

“The Breakers really help with breaking out of your shell. I am mostly shy, but with break dance you can express yourself. It is hard but with practice you can get better at it,” she said.

Anyone interested in more information about the club can visit studentafffairs.mercer.edu/campuslife/studentorgs or visit a practice in the University Center.

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