Culture News

Local Hip-Hop Dance Troupe ElektroLytes Win America's Best Dance Crew

Gilbert hip-hop dance crew Elektrolytes has a habit of impressing people with their flashy b-boy moves and energetic routines. They've wowed crowds at Cyphers, won dance battles around Arizona, and took home gold medals at last year's Hip-Hop International competition in Las Vegas,

All this pales in comparison to their latest victory: Winning the seventh season of America's Best Dance Crew.

On Wednesday night, the Elektrolytes were named the victors of the MTV reality dance competition (which is produced by America Idol's Randy Jackson) earning a $100,000 grand prize in the process.

The eight-member troupe, which is based out of Gilbert's Groove Factory Dance Studio, outlasted nine other crews from Atlanta, Los Angeles, and other cities from around the U.S. during the current season to win the title. Like similar current reality competition TV shows, America's Best Dance Crew chooses who's eliminated each week via viewer voting.

Each episode of the weekly show features competing dance crews must come up with stunning routines based on popular recording artists - like Rihanna, LMFAO, and Pitbull - and the top vote-getters from each week move on while those with the least amount of votes are eliminated.

The Elektrolytes, who first began performing in 2006 and regularly perform at hip-hop and dance events throughout the Valley, were considered underdogs early on this season. They came in near the bottom of the voting totals during a few rounds and even came close to being eliminated twice.

They ultimately proved to be the winners of the season, beating out all-female Hawaii-based troupe 8 Flavahz in the final round on Wednesday night with a spectacular routine based around the Katy Perry track "Part of Me."

The crew's Facebook page was understandably flooded with congratulations following their victory, including one fan named Taylor Wood who stated: "It's insane to think that just a few months ago you were performing at [Brophy's] Football game and Friday Night Lights, now you're champions of America's Best Dance Crew."

Elektrolytes will make their glorious return to Phoenix today and are scheduled to appear at a welcome home party on Sunday night at Cyphers: The Center for Urban Arts. Doors open at 5 p.m. and will include a meet and greet, giveaways, and performances.

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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.