DETROIT – A unique dance group from southwest Detroit has been working day and night to make it to an international dance competition to put Detroit up against some of the best dance groups in the country, but inflation is hurting their hopes.
Local 4 went to a dress rehearsal as they continued to prepare even though they are still in need of some help to make the trip.
In southwest Detroit, this group of very special dancers is putting detroit dance on the map...
Their name is Ballet Folklórico De Detroit (BFD) and they’re dancing the traditional Mexican dance known as Ballet Folklorico, popularized in Mexico, the American southwest and Texas, but with all of the Detroit attitude.
“We have that nose to the grindstone mentality that we’re bringing. You know we can overcome the challenges,” said co-founder Lance Rodriquez.
The group was founded by 29-year-old Lance Rodriguez and his mother Janette who volunteer their time five days a week to compete against some of the best groups in the country. With more than 40 students at three different skill levels. They work at the Patton Park Community Center to keep this Mexican tradition alive.
“The people that we’re competing against that we’re dancing against are people who do it full time. They’re full-time instructors,” said Rodriquez. “They have degrees in dance. They can dedicate their whole being to just being good.”
And this year they’re hoping to get back to an international championship in texas, one of the biggest of the year with the hopes of bringing back a few trophies again.
“We went last year and we were able to get two first-place trophies and a third-place trophy,” said Rodriquez.
But they need help because time is running out. The group leaves for texas next week and where things stand now leaves Ballet Folklorico short.
“Because of inflation and just the rising costs to everything from food to gas the price of the rentals the Airbnb, everything costs exponentially more,” said Rodriquez.
But money or not they’re going to keep dancing. To keep tradition in all its sights and sounds alive.
If you would like to help out the dance group, click here.