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Rudi Smit | All photography supplied

|“Dancing is an art. The floor is my canvas. And I am the brush. And whatever I create, comes from the heart.”|

We chatted to Cape Town’s Hip Hop/ Jazz funk fusion choreographer and founder of Untimitive dance crew, Rudi Smit. To Smit, dancing is more than just movement. It is an expression of passion and a display of the inferno of human emotion. It is felt from head to toe with the whole body reverberating within the beat. “Without passion, you are just another body that can move,” he says.

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Smit (24) has a sixth sense when someone is struggling with choreography however he finds that passion is “undeniable and unshakable and it cannot be faked”.

“I am absolutely lost without dancing. In no cheesy way, it just is everything to me,” he says.

Throughout his dancing career, Rudi’s parents have been supportive. They have provided him with the necessary support to advance his career, including traveling expenses to competitions around the world. Rudi’s parents used to drive thousands of kilometers to ensure that he arrives on time for his auditions, castings, rehearsals, and performances.

“Others are not as fortunate,” Rudi admits. He knows of many cases where parents oppose dancing, “because in our communities parents still assume that dancing is not a sustainable career”.

“As a result, the children and the talent suffer a huge amount of unhappiness. Like any other career, dance and choreography are serious and sustainable. One just needs to work hard and keep focus. Those outside the dance world often think that dancing is easy and that it’s just about moving your body. However, the truth is we go through hours and hours of rehearsals to perfect our movements and sync up with one another. Our bodies take the strain as a result of those rehearsals.”

Easy routines are a myth, as it takes countless of hours to master and perfect a dance move.

“There is so much to consider when looking at dance. It’s not an easy job and it’s not all about coming together for a short while to put together a quick routine and be done. There is a history behind it all. We cry and sometimes our bodies fail us and can’t take the strain. We sweat, laugh, but all you see is passion and grace as an end result,” says Rudi.

 

Rudi thinks that dance is growing and changing rapidly and is moving in a direction where those outside the dancing world are slowly starting to respect and understand the hard work put into perfecting a performance. He is also excited to see how the South African dance performance industry is growing and being recognized internationally.

Rudi had the opportunity to work with Hollywood stars such as Cassie and Kenny Wormald due to his mind-blowing choreography scenes featured in American dance movie ‘Honey 3’.

“It was a great opportunity working with people that I used to watch on TV and twelve years later, I work with them in the same dance studio,” exclaims Rudi.

If he is not in rehearsal rooms, running choreography classes, on set or working with clients, it would be the end of Rudi. “Ideas and concepts and movements are inspired by the music and what it makes me feel. Sometimes I visualize certain movements or feelings when I hear songs, other times I see a story playing off in my head and a concept is born from that,” says Rudi.

 

 

Rudi recommends the WeDfy dance studio because it offers beginners to intermediate classes as well as master classes for industry professionals. It is a great place for beginners to learn everything they need to know about dance.

Rudi and his Untimitive crew are currently working on two projects that will be released soon. The best part however is that Rudi is searching for young talent, so stay tuned!

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn from the best in the game.

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Also, don’t forget to subscribe to Rudi Smit’s YouTube channel and learn some great dance moves to save your life during a dance ‘situation’.

Did you know?

Rudi has choreographed a video to American singer and songwriter Meghan Trainor’s single “Me Too” on his YouTube channel. The video has over 961, 000 views on YouTube and the video has also been viewed by Trainor herself.

[All photography by Willem Botha]