More than two decades ago, Rennie Harris started a dance company to try to eliminate negative stereotypes about rap and hip-hop. Now, Harris has multiple companies, and is bringing his Denver-based Grass Roots Project to Carbondale this weekend. Harris spoke with Aspen Public Radio’s Patrick Fort about how he talks about race through dance.
On the problems with the way we look at hip-hop dance..
“The way we’re taught to think, in regards to the arts, is based on this intellectual realm. The spoken word, the written word...Those things are seen as a sort of philosophical. But when it comes to dance, people can’t figure out how that relates to this. How dance is philosophical. Dance is about feeling. It’s a visceral feeling.”