Inaugural ‘Lords of The Land’ Festival Spotlights Hip Hop Culture in Cleveland

By Steve Sucato

The most ambitious and one of largest hip hop events to take place in Cleveland in recent years, 10K Movement’s inaugural Lords of The Land (LoTL) summer festival takes place this week starting Thursday, July 29 and running through Sunday, August 1 in sites around downtown.

Modeled after some of the biggest hip hop events in the country, the festival’s marquee event is The LoTL Championships hip hop/street dance battle featuring dancers from around the country competing for cash prizes and bragging rights. Says festival founder and 10k Movement founder/director Samuel McIntosh, “We have dancers coming from Houston, Dallas, Los Angeles and the East Coast in full force and Cleveland should be well represented.”

The festival, sponsored by The Andy Warhol Foundation, SPACES and DANCECleveland, will also include dance workshops, live music/DJ’ing, an open-to-the-public cypher King/Queen battle, graffiti artists, performances by Elevated Dance crew and 10K Movement’s dancers along with various social gatherings and a closing BBQ Cookout on Sunday.

Samuel McIntosh and 10K Moment dancers. Photo courtesy of 10K Movement.

The LoTL Championships is an all-age, gender inclusive battle tournament where some 150 registered and qualifying dancers will compete for $500 top prizes in a trio of categories: 1 v 1 Krumping, judged by Cleveland’s own MGPAK (Paul Carpenter Jr.), 1 v1 Popping, judged by Los Angeles’ Slim Boogie, and a 1 v 1 Open Styles category judged by New York breakdance pioneer B Girl Rokafella.

“There is some crazy talent coming,” say McIntosh. “As a competitor I would be super excited. The caliber of dancers in Cleveland this weekend is going to be of a high caliber and the event is really going to push people and that was our goal.”

The LoTL Championships preliminaries, cypher sessions, and additional dance workshops will take place on Friday, July 30 (see schedule below) at Buck Out Cleveland on East 49th Street with a $20 entry for dancers per tournament, a fee of $15 per workshop, and $15 for spectators.

Then on Saturday, July 31, the festival comes to its climax with the free-to-the-public LoTL Championships final hosted by Master of Ceremonies and Cleveland b-boy, actor and musician, Tony “Fresh” (Anthony Velez) at Cleveland Public Square. In addition to the battles’ winners being chosen, an expected crowd of 500+ can also enjoy food trucks, live DJ music, additional dance performances and whole lot more.

The 10K Challenge [Exhibition Dance Battle] at moCa Cleveland. Photo courtesy of 10K Movement.

McIntosh says while 10K Movement and others have hosted several dance battles in the Cleveland area including this past May, The 10K Challenge [Exhibition Dance Battle] at moCa Cleveland, the hasn’t experienced a hip hop/street dance event of this scale. It is something he feels the community deserves and hopes to make Lords of The Land (LoTL) an annual event.

** FESTIVAL SCHEDULE **

THURSDAY, JULY 29 – Welcome Night

$20 per Workshop

Location: Buck Out Cleveland [1242 E. 49th Street, Suite 5-3N, 3rd Floor, Cleveland, OH 44114]

  • 6:00 pm – Doors & registration 
  • 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm – Popping Workshop (Erin De Phunk)
  • 7:30-8:30 pm – Krump Workshop (MGPAK)
  • 9:00 – 10:00 pm- Welcome Session

FRIDAY, JULY 30th – Workshops & * Prelims *

$20 Entry for Dancers per tournament / $20 per Workshop / $15 for Spectators

Location: Buck Out Cleveland [1242 E. 49th Street, Suite 5-3N, 3rd Floor, Cleveland, Ohio 44114]

  • 12:00 – 1:00 pm – Doors & Registration
  • 1:00 – 2:00 pm – Popping Workshop (Erin De Phunk)
  • 2:00 – 3:00 pm – Popping Workshop (Jesse Sykes)
  • 3:00 – 4:00 pm – Hip Hop & Floorwork Workshop (Rockafella)
  • 4:00 – 5:00 pm – Popping Workshop (Slim Boogie)
  • 5:00 – 6:00 pm – Prelim Registration & DJ / cyphers (Hip Hop / Open Styles music)
  • 6:00 pm – Prelims *HARD START*
  • 6:00 – 6:30 pm – Prelims (Open Styles)
  • 6:30 – 6:45 pm – DJ / cyphers (Popping music)
  • 6:45 – 7:15 pm – Prelims (Popping)
  • 7:15 – 7:30 pm – DJ/ cyphers (Krump music) 
  • 7:30 – 8:00 pm  Prelims (Krump)
  • 8:00 – 8:15 pm – DJ / cyphers (Open Styles music)  
  • 8:15 – 9:15 pm – Top 32 (Open Styles, Popping, Krump)
  • 9:15 – 10:00 pm – Top 16 (Open Styles, Popping, Krump) (Top 8 announced next day)

*Venue Change*

Location: Re:bar [2130 E. 9th St, Cleveland, OH 44115]

  • 11:00 pm – Cypher / Session (21 & Up)

SATURDAY, JULY 31 – LoTL Hip Hop & Street Dance Festival

Location: Cleveland Public Square: 3 Public Square, Cleveland, OH 44113

  • 12:00 pm -Event begins (DJ, food & vendors arrive on-site)
  • 1:00 pm – Official Event Start
  • 1:30 pm – Performers & competitors call time
  • 2:00 pm – Judge call-time, MC begins
  • 2:30- 2:45 pm – Kick-off dance performance 
  • 3:00 pm – Top 8 Brackets announced + Top 8 (Quarter Finals) Begins
  • 3:00 – 3:45 pm – Top 8 (Quarter’s) (Open Styles, Popping, Krump)
  • 3:45 – 4:00 pm – DJ showcase & cyphers 
  • 4:00 – 4:45 pm – Top 4 (Semi’s) (Open Styles, Popping, Krump)
  • 4:45 – 5:15 pm – Elevated Crew dance performance
  • 5:15 – 5:45 pm – Finals 
  • 5:45 – 6:15 pm – Judge Showcases
  • 6:15 – 6:30 pm – Winners announced ! 
  • 6:30 – 8:00 pm – DJ / cyphers 
  • 8:00 pm – Event Conclusion

*Venue Change*

Location:  Goodnight John Boy, 1167 Front Ave, Cleveland, OH, 44113

  • 10:00 pm – After Party (21 & Up)

SUNDAY, AUGUST 1 – BBQ Cookout, Cyphers, Community

Location: Edgewater Park, Cleveland Metroparks

  • 12:00 pm

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