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‘Breaking’ out

Daniel Bouwmeester    June 30, 2023    3 min read   

A talented young performer has launched a weekly breakdancing class – for all ages, beginners through to intermediate – in Springfield Central on Saturday mornings.

19-year-old Springfield Lakes resident Ethan Hart began teaching the one-hour breakdancing class in late April – just months after moving here from Canberra.

“I have started this new class in Springfield Lakes to introduce breakdancing to the community,” Ethan said.

Also known as “breaking”, this instantly recognisable dance style originated in the Bronx borough of New York City in the late 1970s.

Like other styles of dance, breaking is a form of expression through movement, Ethan explained.

It is made up of “top rocks” (moving the feet while upright), “drops” (moving to the ground), “freezes” (holding positions still), and “power moves” (those requiring momentum, such as headspins or flares).

The activity will in fact be a medal event at next year’s Paris 2024 Olympic Games – the Olympics organising committee considers breaking to be a “dance sport”. It was also part of the 2018 Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires.

Ethan has been teaching dance since 2017, and he said he is thrilled to be at the stage where he can now pass on his unique expertise.

“I love teaching because I love seeing my students grow and improve – and sharing the breaking culture with people.

“My breaking class will help improve fitness levels, overall ability to dance, and will be a supportive environment for people to grow their confidence.”

Ethan on stage in 2018. Images: Ethan Hart.

Born in Canberra, Ethan has been a dancer in various styles since the age of 5 – and started breaking at age 10.

“As a kid, I was inspired by Michael Jackson, dance movies such as Step Up, and [Canberra-based] hip-hop group Kulture Break.”

Ethan saw Kulture Break at a local shopping centre, performing with singer-songwriter and dancer Timomatic. A testament to making dreams a reality, years later Ethan himself would dance on stage with both Kulture Break and Timomatic – on tour around Australia.

And that only scratches the surface of his accomplishments at such a young age.

“I am a past TEDx speaker,” Ethan said. “I have performed at Parliament House and the Ronald McDonald Charity House Ball – along with many other corporate dance performances.”

Meanwhile, Ethan said: “I am loving the warmer weather and the community of people in Springfield Lakes.”

Image: Springfield Health & Fitness, Springfield Central.

Recently, Jordan MP Charis Mullen voiced her support for Ethan’s unique initiative.

“We have our own home-grown talent right here in the Jordan Electorate,” Ms Mullen said.

“If you have kids wanting to try it out or you just want to fulfil your 1980s dream of being a professional breakdancer, then head to Springfield Health and Fitness.”

Ethan Hart’s Breakdance Class runs on Saturdays, 9.30am to 10.30am, at Springfield Health & Fitness gym – Shop 90/1 Main Street, Springfield Central (next to St. George Bank). $10 per class.

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Daniel Bouwmeester

Daniel was born in a mining town in New South Wales to Dutch and Welsh immigrants, before relocating to Logan City, where he attended Canterbury College for twelve years. He pursued his passion for music by completing a first-class honours degree at the University of Queensland (UQ), and later signed with a local record label. He has travelled the world from a young age, including a student exchange in rural France, a job working the ski lifts in Colorado, and visits to the islands of the South Pacific. After a six-year career in market research, Daniel returned to UQ to complete a Bachelor of Journalism and Arts dual degree, majoring in political science. His varied experiences at home and abroad have contributed to a passion for spreading good news while defending the truth buried inside complex societal paradigms.