Birmingham Hippodrome to celebrate 50 years of hip hop with ground breakin’ festival


Birmingham Hippodrome has announced B-SIDE Hip-Hop Festival will return to the city for seven days of extraordinary dance, performances, competitions and events this June.

Celebrating 50 years since the birth of hip hop, the free annual festival will take place from 8 – 14 June and will bring together the best artists and acts from all four elements of the genre: breakin’, graffiti, DJ’ing and MC’ing.

To kickstart the citywide festival, Birmingham Hippodrome’s Young Advocates will be curating a takeover event for young people (age 14+) at the Hippodrome on Thursday 8 June. The day will include taster sessions and workshops led by local artists, which explore all elements of hip hop, as well as an informal Open Mic session.

On Friday 9 June, the Hippodrome will host professional-level dance masterclasses led by international artists and a special screening of the acclaimed BBC documentary, Fight the Power – How Hip Hop Changed the World.

B-SIDE Hip-Hop Festival will move into the city across the weekend with dancers competing in breakin’, all style hip hop and waacking in and around Birmingham Hippodrome on Saturday 8 June as part of Break Mission Worldwide Dance Championships and Queerside: Waacking Championships.

Alongside the dance battles and competitions, there will be an all-day Graff Jam in Southside, a celebration of Afrofuturism at the Hippodrome and much more to be announced.

Both championship grand finals will occur at Bullring & Grand Central on Sunday 11 June. 

The festival culminates at the Hippodrome on Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 June with Breakin’ Convention, a jaw-dropping showcase of hip-hop dance theatre. The UK tour of Breakin’ Convention ends in Birmingham and features exceptional international headline acts alongside the best local hip-hop crews.

Chris Sudworth, Creative Director at Birmingham Hippodrome said: “We’re thrilled to bring our annual B-SIDE Hip-Hop Festival back to the city for its eighth year!

This year, the festival is all about bringing people together to celebrate 50 years of hip hop. The extraordinary programme of competitions, performances and events that we’ve curated with our partners will do just that.

“We look forward to welcoming exceptional international dancers to the competitions, while also shining a light on all of the fantastic talent across Birmingham. There will be lots to see and lots to get involved in – it’s going to be incredible!”

B-SIDE Hip-Hop Festival is presented in partnership with Bullring & Grand Central, co-produced with Break Mission, Queerside, Afroflux and GraffitiArtist.com.

Press Release