Through their sharp moves and sick grooves, these remarkably talented Filipino dance crews have made the country proud on the dance floor.
While Filipinos are mostly known as naturally gifted singers, history has also proven that when it comes to the dance floor, Pinoys are also definitely the one to beat. Over the years, Filipino dancers have been repping local talent in a victorious motion, devouring world stages and acing international competitions. And if you’re not convinced yet, just let these incredibly awe-inspiring Filipino dance crews that have been busting out some triumphant moves show you what world-class really means.
The OG Pinoy dance group that put the Philippines on the world map, the Philippine AllStars dominated the hip-hop scene in the late 2000s. Initially composed of 12 founding members from different backgrounds (with rappers, musicians, even actors in the mix), the AllStars proudly represented Filipino talent on the international dance arena and went on to win two titles at the Hip-Hop International’s World Hip-Hop Dance Championships titles (aka the Olympics of hip-hop), the first-ever all-Filipino dance group to do so.
And perhaps it’s their 2008 victory that is the most special with that unforgettable choreography that you might have seen performed or recreated by other local dance troupes. Throughout their almost two-decade history, the AllStars have continued to prove the beasts that they are and have inspired other Pinoy hip-hop aspirants, nabbing world title after world title, doing their own concerts, and getting featured in commercials, among many other feats. Do you remember that ever-nostalgic First Day High ad? Well, it’s choreographed by then-AllStars’ leader Kenhjhons Serrano. They’re that iconic.
Another Filipino dance crew that has made world dance history is A-Team. Founded and headed by hip-hop dance coach duo The Ardas (siblings MJ and Angelica Arda), the 20-member strong A-Team has been killing it on the stage since 2011, winning several major international titles. The most notable of it would be their gold medal at the megacrew division of the World Hip-Hop Dance Championships in 2014, where they became the first Filipino team to be crowned in the said category.
With their eclectic street dance styles and athleticism, A-Team solidified their veteran status gracing the stages of other competitions and even winning another bronze medal at the HHI in 2015. In 2021, James Reid’s independent music label Careless announced that A-Team was their newest addition to their growing roster of artists to promote dance as a stand-alone performance art. And what a fitting choice as A-Team is indeed one of the nation’s bests.
A household name in the local hip-hop dance community, UPeepz evolved from being a university-based team to becoming a world-renowned dance crew. Formed in 2011 at the University of the Philippines Diliman, Upeepz showed their mettle by winning major world titles at the prestigious World Supremacy Battlegrounds (besting over 150 groups) in 2015, back-to-back victories (first Pinoy dance crew to do so) at the World Hip-Hop Dance Championships in 2016 and 2017, and a recent placement at the Body Rock Dance Competition in 2019.
Not only that, Upeepz’ junior group VPeepz also emerged victorious in the third season of NBC’s World of Dance where their impeccable skill and synchronicity made them eventual winners in their division and the fourth best team overall. As if not done making jaws drop with their sheer talents yet, UPeepz returned to wow audiences and judges Ne-Yo, Jennifer Lopez, and Derek Hough once more as the adult team (led by coach Chips Beltran) conquered the WOD season four stage with proudly Pinoy-themed performances. Back home, UPeepz can be seen doing collabs with top Pinoy artists and also paying it forward by holding free workshops for dance enthusiasts. Truly, UPeepz is world-class.
Also reigning supreme on the dance floor is the 11-member dance crew FMD Extreme. Based in Marikina, FMD Extreme just holds the record of the only Pinoy team to ever pull off a three-peat (2013, 2014, and 2016) at the open crew division of the World Supremacy Battlegrounds in Australia. Touted as “one of the most prestigious and longest running street dance competitions in the Southern Hemisphere,” the WSB gathers hundreds of teams and over a thousand dancers annually in celebration of hip-hop culture. This makes the weight of FMD Extreme’s achievements so remarkable that a Senate resolution was made to honor them.
JUNIOR NEW SYSTEM
Junior New System has toured the globe, captivating everyone with their rather death-defying skills and a natural talent for entertainment. The all-male Pinoy group first made noise on the Asia’s Got Talent stage where they received a golden buzzer for their semi-finals performance. Some stunning performances and standing ovations later, Junior New System achieved its biggest break as one of AGT’s inaugural season grand finalists.
Known for their backflips and stunts while on stilettos, they would later impress the world, appearing on America’s Got Talent and World’s Got Talent and showing their signature spectacle that would earn them semifinals placement. Needless to say, Junior New System is etched in the Filipino history books as one of the most popular Filipino dance crews who made a mark worldwide.
EL GAMMA PENUMBRA
You’re probably one of those who was enchanted by El Gamma Penumbra’s mesmerizing and breathtaking shadow acts. The team is composed of young performers from Batangas who, even without a formal training in dance, has persevered in carving their own path by joining and winning various dance competitions.
Their breakthrough into the entertainment industry happened in 2010 when they incorporated shadow arts into their dance as a form of making themselves stand out and eventually joined Pilipinas Got Talent where they emerged as finalists.And then there was their history-making feat at Asia’s Got Talent where El Gamma Penumbra was cemented as one of the most talented groups in the world. Their culturally relevant and resonant presentations, their passion, and philanthropic work have made El Gamma Penumbra not only the country’s pride, but also an inspiration to many.