By VANESSA NIKEN
THEODORE Thaddeus Towalila, 25, loves to dance.
It is fun and it also keeps him fit and healthy.
“I was 14 when I started my career as an entertainer. Watching movies such as Step Up and You got Served really inspired me to start hip-hop.
“I learnt how to choreograph and enhance my skills in the art of dancing. Dancing in school items and cultural shows boosted my confidence. I felt happy and free when I perform.”
Theo is from Teyaya village, Losuia in Milne Bay. He has two elder sisters. Their parents died in 2005. It devastated them, especially Theo, who was in Grade Three then. It badly affected his education.
But with the support of his two big sisters, Theo pulled himself together and decided to move on.
“Despite the hardship I faced, I completed my primary education in 2010, continued at the Gerehu Secondary School in Port Moresby in 2011 and 2012, then completed upper secondary at the Port Moresby National High School in 2013 and 2014.”
He remembers how he used to turn on the radio and pretend to be like Micheal Jackson “moon-walking and hip-thrusting”.
“ It is so exciting and fun to mingle with people who have different genres of talent, and challenging because the level of talent in PNG is very high.”
“My parents used to motivate me to take part in events to showcase my talent and to be proud of myself. It boosted my self-esteem and gave me confidence when I performed.”
There were no dance classes then in Port Moresby to attend so he “taught” himself.
“I built myself from the ground up, learning from dance videos, controlling my body movements, and mastering my posture and techniques.”
His dance style is a mixture of hip-hop – krump, free-styling, popping, locking, tutting and swag.”
He is today a well-known hip-hop dancer in Port Moresby.
He has taken part in dance competitions such as Urban Bounce, PNG’s Got Talent, Ice Bust a Move and the recent Digicel Stars 2019.
“It is so exciting and fun to mingle with people who have different genres of talent, and challenging because the level of talent in PNG is very high.”
He did not make it to the finals but is grateful for the opportunity to showcase his talent on national television.
“It was an epic experience. I made new friends and established connections in the entertainment network. It was a great step forward in my career.”
He loves to draw in his spare time.
He also conducts dance classes for children in his neighbourhood at Ensisi Valley, Port Moresby. He founded the “Seseme dance crew” and “Totemic crew”.
He also plans to start a hip-hop dance class in Port Moresby.
“It is confirmed to be at the Aquatic Indoor Complex at Taurama. I am awaiting the confirmation of my schedule and contract. As soon as that’s approved, I will begin classes.”
He plans to focus on technique, improvisation, choreography, community, somatic awareness, and musical awareness.
“Papua New Guinea is blessed with culture in dance. I think involving different age groups to dance will boost self-expression and enhance creativity.”
If the Government is willing to support, Theo wants to put together national teams at junior, varsity and adult levels to represent the country on the world stage.
“Your talent defines you, which makes you special. If you have a passion for what you do, it will take you places and reward you.”