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From Ashaiman to the world; upclose with dancers in Beyonce and Shatta Wale’s ‘Already’ video

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The decision to participate in the challenge was not one Dancegod LLoyd, as he is referred to was keen in taking part when his manager brought up the idea. It took days and a fractured relationship with his manager for him to agree to partake in the Already video dance challenge.

“I joined a dance challenge on Instagram and it got reposted on a lot of big big accounts. I happen to be one of the selected video she put in her story and people were like she just put you in the story so she may be coming for you so better prepare” he disclosed.

The song had gained attention in Ghana because of the feature of self-acclaimed dancehall king Shatta Wale by global icon, Beyonce. However, it is not the only reason Ghanaians have felt a sense of pride, particularly, people within the arts industry.

A Ghanaian dance academy, co-owned by Dancegod Lloyd and Afro Beast, executed portions of the video short in Ghana. The two, who say they grew up in the same neighborhood in Ashaiman doing dance but never met until latter in life. They tell me until three years ago, they used to dance for fun and the fame. However, after bringing on board their manager three years ago, who they call ‘Quabbles’, they have commercialised their craft.

“I met Lloyd and the connection we had, the energy he had is what I needed all my life so when I met him I was like this is what I need” Afro Beats noted adding “strangely we all lived in Ashaiman and his house was like 3 mins away from mine but we never met…”

The dance school the co-founded, Dance With Purpose Academy (DWP Academy), located in Achimota, a suburb of Accra, according to them has trained several dancers.

Though they have had big features with African musicians such as Sarkodie, Mr. Eazi and Stonebwoy in the past, they tell me this feature is the biggest so far and has shot up their value. Even though they won’t disclose the amount they were paid, they say they intend to reinvest the money into expanding their dance school.

Dancegod Lloyd said, “you will not see me or any one buying a Range Rover or buying stuff like that. For now we want to invest in the dance school and expand”. Adding to this, Afro Beast explained that the Academy is open for anybody to join detailing, “we have a membership club, if you want to become a member you have to be auditioned and then you will be put on probation to see if you are up for it or you are in for the fame.”

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Even though the dance crew is made up of Ghanaians, Dancegod Lloyd said the concept of the dance in the Already video was meant to project the African continent. It features dance moves invented in Nigeria, Ghana and Ivory Coast including C’est Moi, developed by late Ivorian star, DJ Arafat, which signifies kingship.

The boys from Ashiaman have promised to release an album in the coming weeks, titled ‘Akwatuo’ which means ‘the journey’ and it talks about how far they have come with dance in the arts industry.

 

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