Trinity International Hip Hop Festival Draws Crowds

The Trinity International Hip-hop Festival is one of the College’s most popular annual events. Every year, Mather Hall becomes the home base for a weekend of Hip-hop performances and hip hop related events all over campus. The festival was founded in 2006 to be a crossroads event for the Hip hop community in Hartford, and a conference on issues of equality, discrimination, and social justice. The weekend draws prominent hip hop artists and performers from all parts of the community, and from all over the world.
The 2016 festival was planned to be the largest in the event’s history and began the night of Thursday, April 7 with an Iron Poet event. Friday, April 8 was the Hijabs and Hoodies day of solidarity. Students wore traditional Muslim hijabs or hoodies to mark their support for Black men and Muslim women who are persecuted for their race or religion in a protest centered around a rally on the Main quad. As the evening arrived, more events began to be concentrated around Mather, which also played host to the photo exhibition “Bongo Wachata (Tanzania Graffiti): Now and Then” which was on display on the second floor throughout the weekend.
Friday night’s most prominent event was the dance exhibition in the Washington Room, which featured dance groups like Rhythm Nation and Team 860, as well as Trinity’s native Shondaa Steppers and Elemental Movement, who performed side by side with dozens of visiting dancers. The teams were followed by dance battles that lasted into the night.
Saturday featured several keynote speakers, film screenings, and events related to hip hop. At a graffiti event on Saturday, attendees painted wooden boards with their own graffiti, which remained on display.
The main event on Saturday evening was the Hip hop performance headlined by music acts Rakim, Joyner Lucas, Poetic Pilgrimage, and Prop Dylan.
“It was a great experience.” Said Francisco Chang ’19. “To see both locals and students just getting pumped for Rakim. Everyone was having fun and enjoying some old school hip hop.” The groups performed and entertained from the afternoon on, and the Saturday night events drew large crowds to the center of Campus. The event on Saturday night and the performance from headliner Rakim acted as the finale of the entire weekend and ended the Trinity International Hip-hop Festival on a high note.

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