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Bonus Tracks: Footwork and Vogue Battles at Lollapalooza

Written by on August 3, 2022

Lollapalooza 2022’s Bonus Tracks stage fosters a place for local talent and radiant passion amongst headline acts.

Nestled away amongst shady trees at the north end of Grant Park lies Lollapalooza’s hidden gem: the Bonus Tracks Stage. You won’t find any headline acts here, but you’ll find the most joyous energy at the festival. The stage’s programming is based around culture, mindfulness, community and movement. It’s a place that fosters inclusivity and connection between the musical acts on the main stages. At this year’s festival, Vocalo was able to catch two Bonus Tracks: Chicago Footwork and the Vogue Battle.

Chicago Footwork

Chicago Footworkers, emceed by Mike D., led the crowd in an energy circle and showed off their craziest moves. Footwork is a type of dance emphasizing foot position and movement which originated in the late ‘80s with the rise of house music.

Despite their different troupes, the footworkers’ chemistry is infectious.
Photo by Makenzie Creden/ Vocalo Radio, Chicago Public Media

“By the time we got to the ‘90s era, it turned into a style of music called ghetto house, and the footwork got a little bit more complex,” Prince Jron of the HaVoC troupe explained. “When we got more to the present day, it went to juke music.”

Thirty years later, and 40 BPM faster, Chicago Footwork brings dancers together from different troupes — and sometimes from different countries — to dance-battle it out in a friendly yet passionate competition.

“When we dance, we are just showing who we are.”

Prince Jron

Photos by Makenzie Creden/ Vocalo Radio, Chicago Public Media

“[Chicago Footwork] came from the mud,” John “Boodilla” King, another footworker, explained. “It came from the poverty areas of Chicago… It came from just us battling in the street, getting our frustration out, having trauma, things going on in our life and being able to express it in a positive manner.”

Vogue Battle

Up next was the Vogue Battle, where ballroom dancers put on their sassiest and boldest attitudes in a tournament-style dance competition. 

Photo by Makenzie Creden/ Vocalo Radio, Chicago Public Media

Voguing is another type of dance with ‘80s roots, originating out of Harlem ballrooms among the Black and Latinx LGBTQ+ community. Inspired by model poses and gymnastic moves, voguers adopt an attitude of sass, stardom and beauty. 

The connection between the performers and the crowd at the Bonus Tracks stage was nothing short of electric. The host even went on to select contestants from the crowd to compete in a battle of their own. Throughout the show, there was such a sense of inclusivity and acceptance in the air: two cornerstones of ballroom.

We got a chance to talk to a few performers from both acts, and their passion was radiant. Check out our Bonus Tracks stage audio feature to hear more.

Photo by Makenzie Creden/ Vocalo Radio, Chicago Public Media

Written by Makenzie Creden

Audio production by Ari Mejia

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