Coming to Logo TV tomorrow, Thursday, August 9:
WHEN THE BEAT DROPS
A celebration of a Southern African American underground dance subculture.
Sims, an acclaimed choreographer, makes a fitting directorial debut with this loving look at bucking, a dance style developed by African American gay men as an homage of sorts to the cheerleading dance teams of historically black colleges and universities. Celebrating flamboyancy, with teams typically dressed in majorette inspired outfits, bucking is a high energy, athletic dance that has proven an outlet for creativity and a refuge for African American gay men to find a community and alternate family. The film profiles several dancers, but its heart is Anthony, one of the pioneers of the subculture, who heads up Atlanta’s legendary Phi Phi team. Phi Phi, long the rulers of the bucking scene, transitioned to serving as organizers for competitions, but the film culminates in the team staging a comeback, even as dancers relate some of the struggles they still face due to homophobic responses to their participation.