A TOP hip hop crew is hoping to go one step further in a national dance-off.
Ruff Diamond from Hartlepool has made it through to the finals of the UK Hip Hop Championships which will be held at Thorpe Park in Surrey.
They will be up against 19 rivals who were all chosen from regional auditions throughout the country to compete in the three-day festival from Friday, June 3, to Sunday, June 5.
The seven-member crew made up of 13 to 17-year-olds were runners-up in last year’s UK event and qualified for the world finals where they acquitted themselves magnificently.
But Ruff Diamond won’t be the only Hartlepool representatives at this year’s UK event.
Another crew from the same town hip hop academy, Urban Rockz run by Zac Healey, have also qualified.
They are the junior version of Ruff Diamond and are known as Lil Diamondz which is made up entirely of dancers aged under 13.
Zac said: “It was the success of Ruff Diamond last year which inspired me to do this.
“It is great to have two crews from Hartlepool who have come through the auditions.”
Zac said Lil Diamonds were only formed after his hip hop academy Urban Rockz opened in September last year.
Ruff Diamond will compete in a section known as Varsity and Lil Diamondz in Juniors. Their performances will be watched by crowds of 1,000 people or more.
They will be hoping to qualify for this year’s world finals which will be held at the Red Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, USA, from Wednesday, July 27, to Monday, August 1.