The Fine Arts Building was bursting with energy on Wednesday night as international dancer Vivake Khamsingsavath, a 2009 Binghamton University alumnus, led a hip-hop dance workshop hosted by the Philippine American League (PAL).
The workshop began at 9 p.m. with a short introduction from Khamsingsavath, a former member of PAL.
Khamsingsavath said he got involved in dancing because he was good at it.
“When I was 21, I auditioned for International Flag Dancing,” Khamsingsavath said. “It was then when I first started learning from other people, I’m 25 now. I used to watch NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, and I’d try to copy it. I was naturally good at moving, I just need somebody to sculpt that movement.”
Khamsingsavath said even though he majored in English, he has always had passion for dance.
“I was always naturally good at English, but that didn’t make me happy,” Khamsingsavath said. “Dancing was the only thing that made me happy.”
He led the 30 participants in a quick warm up to Frank Ocean’s “Thinking of You” and then taught them a routine to the Skrillex song, “Goin’.”
The choreographer asked for a moment of silence during the workshop for a BU alumni Cristina Ignacio, who passed away last year from cancer. She served as PAL’s cultural chair while Khamsingsavath was an undergraduate student and was the PAL member who recruited him.
By 10:30 p.m., Khamsingsavath split the participants up into groups and performed the dance with each group in turn.
After each group had danced, everyone sat back and watched Khamsingsavath perform the entire routine with the addition of some freestyle dance moves and a series of back flips, which garnered cheers from those attending.
Christy Li, a freshman majoring in economics, said she enjoyed the event.
“I thought it was very fun and he was a really good teacher because even though we don’t dance, we still got the choreography,” Li said.
Khamsingsavath said that he was pleased with the success of the workshop.
“I was actually really happy with the workshop; it was such a good turnout,” he said. “It’s really hard to get guys to dance, and there were probably more guys than girls, which is awesome. If you get more guys to dance, I think it will draw more attention to dance. Everybody’s attitude and energy was so good.”