World hip hop champion Kyra Aoake has danced with Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez and Justin Bieber. She's on a campaign to inspire young people to be Smokefree and lead healthy lives.
“You have be fit you have to be healthy otherwise it's not going to work you know like just staying on top of that mentally, physically like all of that,” says Aoake.
She started dancing in this studio in Ōtara when she was eight and since then has taken to the world stage with her peers from The Palace Dance Studio.
“That was just a big dream come true in my life especially being from NZ and being such a small country it's like cool to see that dancers can do it over there as well not just Americans,” she says.
Explaining her passion for dance she says, “Everytime I dance I just zone out and do my own thing and when I like stop I dancing I'm like wow.”
She's an ambassador for the Hip-Hop International NZ and Smoke-free "Keep up with the crew" campaign, taking free beginner hip hop workshops across New Zealand with positive messages.
“So eating right, getting sleep, drinking water, like all of that is like crucial for a dancers life anyway for your career otherwise your body is just going to like fade out,” says Aoake.
Participating in the workshop, 17-year-old Liani Gribble from Hip-Hop dance crew The Brady Bunch says, “Personally I don't think you can keep up with the crew and it's just a really bad habit, so I think it's a really positive message that all three of them are trying to tell us young whānau.”
Using her skills and experience, Aoake hopes to educate and inspire others while giving back to the community.
“It's cool to just like come back each year and see all the talent around and just give back to everyone that's like helped me get where I am as well,” she says.
Workshops will be held in Christchurch, Tauranga, Wellington, Whangarei and Hastings.