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The Result of the Rap Battle Campus 

The Result of the Rap Battle

Jake’s mall. Universal Break. February 22nd. Black History Month. Vanier College Free Style Rap Battle 2017… like a moment from a movie.

It’s not every day that the student mall is jam-packed with college-goers surrounding a mini stage and lightly dancing/moving to reggae and rap beats, full of inhibitions – at first. The ‘show’ began roughly 20 minutes late, but once the volume was turned up, shyness broke down – a little. By the time the student participants rocked the mic, the atmosphere was almost club-like, in a strange, school-kind of way (if that’s possible).

The event drew a large crowd away from the temptation of Netflix, and into the rhythm of a genre with deeps roots in African-American culture and history. Originally from Jamaica, widely renouned DJ (MC for the hour) Sampaloo kicked off the rap battle with a few of his own creative spews, while students arrived to compete for a set of quality headphones. Bouncing between reggae, rap, and dance, Sampaloo reminded the spectators of the importance of celebrating different cultures (and unity), reminding people of February’s title as Black History Month.

Five students battled it out on stage while attempting to follow a tricky rule for a contest of this sort – no curse words were permitted. This created some humourous moments as rappers stopped themselves from swearing, often last-minute, thus breaking their momentum slightly and putting them on the spot to come up with a substitute word. In these scenarios, however, improvisation and quick-thinking is key to adapting to an audience and to a competitor. The winner, rapper Oliver, had great success in this department – though his preparation for the competitiong was evident, creating a victorious blend of spontaneity and planning.

Overall, the Free Style Rap Battle proved to be an entertaining distraction from the everyday life of a college student, while simultaneously enriching the events of Black History Month at Vanier, and providing a welcoming environment for students to showcase their creativity.

Written By: Katherine Willcocks

About The Author
Katherine Willcocks Kat has been dabbling in the art of the written word since childhood, dipping her toes in the world of photography every now and then. As a Vanier alumnus who studied in Communications, she explores Spoken Word Poetry, and, of course, journalism.

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