Wakandeez is an Afro-hiphop dance group consisting of members Addapro, Steezin Nate, Zay, and Chris Nieves. Wakandeez was formed originally by Adda and Nate who met at a bar. Nate was already in a dance crew and was impressed with Adda’s dancing enough that he invited Adda to join him for practices with his crew. When Nate eventually left his old crew, he and Adda decided to form a group in 2019 and named it Wakandeez, merging Wakanda from Black Panther and Jabbawockeez, a famous dance crew known for their distinctive white masks worn during performances. Wakandeez also wears these white masks during performances. Zay met them when he faced Nate at a dance battle. Zay asked to join the group afterwards, and they immediately accepted because they saw how good Zay was. Chris is the newest member, and met Adda through a mutual friend, joining Wakandeez soon after.
The group is from allover the country and the globe, with Chris coming from Georgia, Zay from Phoenix, Nate from a Nigerian family in Canada, and Adda from Burundi. Many of them came to Boise through family and work opportunities. The influences present in their dance reflect the diverse background of each individual member, with Afro being one of the biggest influences. They also incorporate a multitude of dance styles, like popping, locking, bone-breaking, and puppetry.
When dancing, Adda’s favorite thing is seeing the audience’s reaction and bringing out the joy in people. Chris enjoys challenging himself and putting himself out there to inspire others to do the same and be vulnerable. Zay promotes his own freedom of speech through music and dance, preferring to use music that is raw, real, and profane because it’s what he feels a connection to. This kind of music is what kept him out of trouble as a kid and hopes introducing other kids to it will keep them out of trouble too. Nate’s reason for dancing began as him showing people that he was talented, but now is more about his own development on stage. His favorite part is connecting with the audience, especially after performances where he can meet people and share their stories and backgrounds
In the future, they’re thinking about having dance sessions at their studio to have people come and dance, sharing their individual styles and voices in order to bring styles to Boise that don’t exist here yet.
Where to find Wakandeez:
· Main account: @wakandeez on Instagram
· Members: @steezin_nate, @addapro_, @uniqueezay, @_cookie.chrisp_ all on Instagram
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