By Alison Baumgartner
lllstyle & Peace Productions is a multicultural Philadelphia-based dance company founded on the basic principles of fostering love, peace, and respect while instilling inspiration and a sense of purpose in all who see their performances. Utilizing elements of West African dance, hip-hop, tap, ballet, DJing, and beatboxing, Illstyle delivers positive messages about respecting one another, and speaking up and standing up to bullies.
Illstyle will be spreading their message of positivity via Poudre School District school visits, UC Health pediatric ward visits, and in their performance at the Lincoln Center on February 25th as a part of the Imagination Series.
Illstyle’s goal is using hip-hop to educate kids and reinforce positivity because they believe that is the key to success. “This program is about kids having self-esteem,” says the group’s founder, Brandon ‘Peace’ Albright to The Patriot Ledger. “Growing up, kids don’t always have the courage or self-esteem to say something or express themselves.”
More than just a fun, positive and family-friendly show, Illstyle displays an astonishing spectacle of rhythm and precision. Albright’s resume is impressive, having danced for major recording artists such as Will Smith, LL Cool J, Run DMC, Boys II Men and The Beach Boys, and touring with DanceAfrica and the Memphis Ballet. Many dancers in the troupe have also toured internationally.
The New York Times raved about Illstyle, saying,“watching [them] was like watching the greatest ballet virtuosos, each fighting gravity and the appearance of effort, and demanding and getting the impossible from the human body. They were fabulous.”
You can see Illstyle & Peace Productions at the Lincoln Center February 25th at 2 p.m, or 6 p.m. Seats are available for $16 at LCtix.com.