Mission & History
Prelude NorCal is an annual dance competition that celebrates the Bay Area dance scene by upholding pillars of inclusivity, hospitality, and community.
By serving as an accessible platform for creative expression, we provide an inclusive space
for dancers of all ethnicities, sexual orientations, and dance styles to share and appreciate one another’s talents. Prelude NorCal aims to reflect the intrinsic diversity of dance and its roots by bringing together a wide spectrum of artists.
We see hospitality as a driving force behind fostering a warm and welcoming environment. Our organization recognizes all patrons and dancers as valued community members and is committed to curating a memorable experience for everyone.
Inspired by our Bay Area roots, Prelude NorCal works to support our community through highlighting regional artists, vendors, and nonprofits. We emphasize the importance of our local relationships while providing dancers the opportunity to build deep rooted and far-reaching connections.
With these values in mind, we strive to host a competition that teams and guests look forward to every year. Prelude NorCal continues to build an inclusive and welcoming environment that supports the diverse voices—and dances—around us.
A local competition hosted by Team Millennia in 2006, Prelude NorCal expanded awareness of the Bay Area dance community. Since then, it has made itself known as a major dance competition statewide. In 2009, Prelude NorCal underwent a year-long reshuffling: in the search for a local host team, Tony approached Main Stacks co-founders May Matsuo and Vivian Peng for Main Stacks to become the new hosts of Prelude NorCal. Under Main Stacks’ leadership, Prelude NorCal has hosted each competition with a different theme, giving every year its own visual identity and bringing excitement to its dancers and patrons. Prelude NorCal has since become an integral part of Main Stacks’ history and dance season, whilst creating lasting friendships with participating teams throughout the years.
Prelude Dance Competition
Prelude Dance Competition was founded by Tony Calub and Danny Batimana in 2006 with Prelude NorCal as the first in the series. Tony, the current owner of the competition series, has since spread different branches across the nation, creating a total of 18 competitions in different regions of the United States including the South, the Midwest, and the East Coast. Prelude's goal is to support local dance communities with competitions showcasing local dance groups and dance companies. Prelude hopes to be a space for expression, improvement, and enrichment for all who take part.
The Bay Area is home to a wide variety of distinct dance styles, cultures, and teams. Signature funk styles like boogaloo started to become popularized in Oakland as early as 1966, paving the way for various native styles and movements to take root as well, such as popping (Sacramento, San Jose, etc.), robotting (Richmond), and strutting (San Francisco).
The Bay is well known for the “hyphy” movement, a term that means “hyperactive” which characterizes the feeling associated with certain songs and dance moves. This term was coined in Oakland by Keak da Sneak and pioneered by Mac Dre, spreading in popularity throughout the Bay in the early 2000s. The “hyphy” movement contributed to local hip hop music, and in turn resulted in the creation of dance styles like “turfing” and “the thizz.”
Today, dance styles native to the Bay Area have continued to spread and create worldwide influence; Bay Area dance culture is constantly growing and evolving as a positive medium for the greater community.
Black Lives Matter
Originally intended as a “hip-hop” dance showcase, Prelude Norcal has long benefited from the artistry of black culture and seeks to honor the Black community from which we continually draw inspiration. To actualize these values we are making the following commitments:
- Beginning in 2020 Prelude is officially dropping “urban” from its former name “Prelude Norcal Urban Dance Competition.” We seek to use language that is inclusive and respectful to all.
- Prelude Norcal is committed to hiring Black, local creatives to support our showcases moving forward, as we want to support artists of non-European descent in our community, with a special intention to seek out Black professionals.
Main Stacks has compiled a public resource database dubbed “Stacks Library”. As we focus on fostering personal growth through education, advocacy, and social action, the Stacks Library serves as an on-going informative resource database that elevates our mission for educational advancement in the dance community. The public drive branches from two main folders that include:
- Black History; This includes a variety of resources from Black Scholars, Activists, Educators, and Artists.
- Dance Resources; This includes resources covering the History of Hip-Hop, the Dance Community, Black Culture Influence, Virtual Dance Classes, and more.
As guests in the house of hip-hop, we continue to educate ourselves on its history and respecting Black culture. This lone resource is not meant to serve as a one step solution, but the first of many in our continued mission to create a safe and inclusive community.
Access the Stacks Library here.
Access the Stacks Library here.
We are a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Berkeley, California. For general inquiries, feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2020 Board of Directors
Mi Le ︎
Micah Park ︎
Gabby Lau ︎
Logan Liu ︎
Words & Writing
2020 Board of Directors
Design & Site
2020, Camille Gwise ︎︎︎