The Unofficial Guide to Audience Watching Performance

Raphael Xavier



Raphael Xavier. Photo by Steven Gunther.

A practitioner of hip-hop dance since 1983 and a 2013 Pew Fellow in the Arts, Raphael Xavier brings a wide range of experience to the stage. He specializes in breaking (widely known as breakdancing), a street dance form he has taught to new generations of hip-hop enthusiasts for years in order to keep its history alive. "As a traditional folk art, it's important to disseminate hip-hop dance and culture in as many ways as possible," he says. His performance, The Unofficial Guide to Audience Watching Performance (TUGTAWP), is autobiographical and presents a running story in which Xavier is both narrator and dancer. Renowned artist and Bessie Award-winner Ralph Lemon acted as a guest rehearsal coach, helping Xavier to push the boundaries of hip-hop. TUGTAWP toured to the Dance Center at Columbia College in Chicago.