Dance battles establish street cred, turf and pride for a crew. But what happens when two groups can’t get face to face? The answer is simple—take it to the internet.
The smackdown between the M&M Cru and AC/DC is now an über-watched web phenomenon. But it started as friendly dance banter between pop star Miley Cyrus and Adam Sevani, who played Moose in Jon Chu’s Step Up 2: The Streets. As the repartee escalated, Adam and Jon decided to call out Miley to start the biggest online dance battle to date.
When Miley accepted the challenge, both sides called every dancer and celebrity they knew to ask them to be on their team. The dancers had a hard choice to make: fall in line with the M&M Cru, including Miley, her backup dancer and best friend Mandy Jiroux, director Cole Walliser and choreographer Teresa Espinosa. Or they could join AC/DC, the Adam Chu Dance Crew.
Once dancer rosters were established, Jon and Cole got cameras and went to work shooting their respective teams.
Since neither side had much help from producers or managers, the dancer-run skirmish gave performers the chance to be more involved backstage as they coordinated logistics and technical aspects.
“I think dancers are interested in doing more but they don’t know how,” says Cole. “It’s great to see them step into other roles.”
While the faux feud started as a joke, it captured enough attention to earn the two groups a live battle at the Teen Choice Awards on August 4.
“I think the main thing is having fun,” Teresa says. “Yes, it’s a battle, but we do it because we love to dance and be together.”
Catch it all at youtube.com/user/jonmchu. —Ariel White