The Can Fu Master

Posts tagged “hip hop

‘Wang Tang offer’ for The Five & The Prophecy of Prana

Only 2 days left!! One show tonight (Friday) at 7.45pm and two tomorrow (Saturday) at 2.30pm and 7.45pm.

 

Best available tickets for £15

Book online, in person or over the phone with Barbican

Phone: 020 7638 8891   Discount code is ‘Wang Tang Offer’
online: http://www.barbican.org.uk/theatre/event-detail.asp?ID=14749  Discount Code is 31001

1383736_10151905784989174_2124918410_nYou wouldn’t want to save a load of money on all your utilities and shopping would you?  www.SavvySavings.Org.uk


Tommy Franzen and ‘The Five & The Prophecy of Prana’

I’m so happy and overwhelmed by what the reviewers have said about my performance of Wang Tang in The Five & The Prophecy of Prana. Playing a role like Wang Tang has been a dream role for me since I was a little boy. I’ve always been very much into martial arts and if it wasn’t for my passion for dancing, I think I would’ve gone down the martial arts route instead. So mixing my dream role with two of my biggest passions, martial arts and dancing, I’ve really been able to embrace this whole project on a deep level. I’m so grateful for the opportunity that Kenrick Sandy and Mikey J Asante has given me.

For people who follows me and my career I wanted share with you the quotes I’ve had from the press regarding this show. I can’t tell you how honoured I am to have some reviewers writing these things about me…

The Times by Donald Hutera

“The troubled Master Wang Tang must whip them into shape. He’s played by the wonderful Tommy Franzén, a dancer whose economy, agility and strength can hardly be bettered. Franzén might be the reason alone to watch The Five & The Prophecy of Prana.

Original article – http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/arts/stage/dance/article3902282.ece

The Guardian by Judith Mackrell

Tommy Franzén as Wang Tang is outstanding. As an actor Franzén is delightful, convincing both as maudlin drunk and wise seer. As a dancer he’s mesmerising, not only in the virtuoso hip-hop routines but in the silken lyricism of his t’ai chi-inspired solos. In his performance alone, you can see a whole new future for hip-hop.”

Original article – http://www.theguardian.com/stage/2013/oct/24/boy-blue-five-prophecy-prana-review

The Independent by Zoe Anderson

“Delinquents are given a chance to redeem themselves by training with the monk, danced by the marvellous Tommy Franzén. Franzén is heroic, finding both the dignity of an old sage and the quicksilver attack of a warrior.”

Original article – http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/theatre-dance/reviews/dance-review-boy-blue-entertainment-barbican-theatre-london-8901108.html#

The Telegraph by Sarah Crompton

“The leading character is Wang Tang – mentor and teacher to the young gang of five, but a man with a troubled past. He is danced by Tommy Franzen, famous both for his television appearances and performances in shows as diverse as Kate Prince’s Some Like it Hip Hop and Russell Maliphant’s The Rodin Project. In everything he does, he has such silkily, weightless skills he is the epitome of grace.”

Original article  – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/10402127/The-Five-and-the-Prophecy-of-Prana-Barbican-Centre-review.html

British Theatre guide

“Winner of this year’s Critic Circle’s National Dance Award for Outstanding Performance in Modern Dance (Male), Tommy Franzén (Some Like It Hip-Hop and Russell Maliphant’s The Rodin Project) is for me the star of the show.”

Original article – http://www.britishtheatreguide.info/reviews/the-five-and-th-barbican-theatr-9550

The Stage.co.uk by Neil Norman

“The dancers combine streetdance moves with martial arts with some brilliance – especially the amazing Tommy Franzen.”

Original article – http://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/review.php/39085/the-five-and-the-prophecy-of-prana

Dancetabs by Lise Smith

“Franzén is in fine form as troubled hero Wang Tang, melding tutting and b-boying and kung-fu with the elegant fluidity of a tai-chi form.”

Original article – http://dancetabs.com/2013/10/boy-blue-entertainment-the-five-and-the-prophecy-of-prana-london/

Londondance.com by Graham Watts

“The performances throughout the cast were excellent. Tommy Franzén provided depth to the complicated central character of Wang Tang, the sole surviving good Guardian who battles the demons of scandal and drink.”

Original article – http://londondance.com/articles/reviews/boy-blue-entertainment-the-five-and-the-prophecy-3/

By Hugo GlendinningPhoto by Hugo Glendinning

Show finished 2nd Nov 2014 so as of time of writing there is still time to see the show. Book your tickets here!


Russell Maliphant Company: The Rodin Project, London – The Guardian

The Rodin ProjectThe Rodin Project. Photo: PR

Russell Maliphant’s 2009 work AfterLight was created in response to the drawings of Vaslav Nijinsky, to the dynamic energy and tension that the great dancer evoked through pencil and paper as well as through his body on stage. Now Maliphant turns to the drawings and sculptures of August Rodin for inspiration. Using a very mixed cast of dancers – skilled in popping and breaking as well as contemporary dance, and including all-round virtuoso Tommy Franzen – Maliphant aims not so much to recreate such famous Rodin images as The Kiss, rather to draw on their physical mass, form and drama. It’s set to a newly commissioned score by Russian composer Alexander Zekke, with a design team including Es Devlin, Stevie Stewart and long-term Maliphant collaborator Michael Hulls.

Sadler’s Wells, EC1, Sun

Judith Mackrell


Cher Lloyd’s debut music video Swagger Jagger that I choreographed is out

After a long suspense of waiting for what Cher Lloyd’s first music video will be like…It’s finally here!

It was a pleasure to work with Cher and I’d like to congratulate her on her debut video. I think she looks fantastic in it. I would also like to give a special thanks to my assistant Maria Swainson from RiRi Productions plus all my amazing  dancers.

Choreography dancers: Stephanie Sit, Jack McKenzie, Sarah Richards, Lindon Barr, Sarah Jane Aboboto, Libby Hall, Daniel Uppal and Nader Musharbash.

Breakers: Bboy Lil’ Tim, Bgirl Roxy, Kay Banner, Bboy Ling and Bboy Silk.

Hope you like the video!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IetUcNRcWj8


Production Company: The Found Collective

Post Production: Mainframe

Directors: Mike Sharpe and Marcus Moresby

Choreographer: Tommy Franzen

Assistant Choreographer: Maria Swainson (RiRi Productions)


Another dance iPhone app I’m part of… Make Dance Street

I’m part of the 2nd iPhone dance app from Make Dance called “Street”. Learn moves from some of the UK’s finest dancers including Turbo, Lizzie Gough, myself and many more.

http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/make-dance-street/id443137750?mt=8&ls=1



I’m performing in ZooNation ‘s Some Like It Hip Hop today at Westendlive 5.20pm

We’ll be performing a 20 minute extract of Some Like It Hip Hop at West End Live today (Saturday the 18th June). It’s taking place at Trafalgar Square at 5.20. Come and watch us to see what you can expect from the full show from 20th October – 19th November at Sadler’s Wells Peacock Theatre.

(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EB3Le9_bUE)


The Streetdance Spy’s interview with me about dance.

Tommy Franzen ‘Blaze’ choreographer: “I want to produce my own show.”

Posted on March 29, 2011 by admin

Twenty-eight year old B-boy and commercial dancer Tommy Franzén started out copying dance moves from sister when he was little back in Sweden. He took up a few classes and he’s never looked back.


Since those toe tapping days Tommy has gone on to star in musicals, appear in films, adverts, and dance talent shows like ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ (SYTYCD) U.K. If you’re still trying to place where you may have seen Tommy – think back to the ‘Pepsi Can-Fu’ advert.

The ‘Urdang’ Academy graduate has achieved so much already, and is in talks to create his own dance show featuring ‘dancing and choreography’. He seems so passionate about this idea, he beams; “I really want my own project that I can put all my experience and heart in to.”  I ask if he is worried that as a result of all the success and coverage of street dance in recent years, whether audiences will get bored of it. Tommy explains “Yeah it’s possible but that’s the risk with everything, choreographers could take things so far that there’s no room to improve, but I think that’ll take at least a couple of years.”

The life of a dancer is certainly not all glitz and glam, Tommy recounts jobs where he has had little or no time to prepare and warm up “you’re just on and you go ahead and do it and you don’t have much time to take care of yourself.” While Tommy was in the bubble of SYTYCD he claims he had to ‘block out everyday life’ he said “you need to do that in order to do well, you can’t have your mind anywhere else but in that place.”

SYTYCD dancer profile shots

I imagine one of the hardest things about a dancers life is the constant physical pressure. Tommy explains there are other less obvious aspects where dance can test you; “it’s also the mental pressure that you go through, it’s the panic of whether your brain has got enough capacity to take in any more information.”It appears, not only do you have to be a positive healthy performer but you also need to be mentally strong. Tommy drives home the point “it’s such hard work to keep training all the time, you need to keep on top of it all the time even if you’re not working.”

No sooner had Tommy finished filming SYTYCD, then he was then snapped up by the smart people of Sadlers Wells to choreograph and perform in ‘Blaze’ the West End Street dance sensation. Used to dancing 10 hour days, the b-boying prince took it all in his stride. He explains that the unpredictability of dance is something he enjoys “you don’t know how much the next project is going to pay, but I kind of like that.

“The thought of not really knowing, I kind of buzz off that.”

When it comes to preparing for dance shows Tommy has rather unorthodox approach. Unlike most dancers he doesn’t hit the gym, oh no, Tommy prefers things a little more risqué, a spot of ‘cross training, rock climbing and sometimes gymnastics’ is more his thing. Despite Tommy’s penchant for dangerous pass times he makes sure he looks after himself and knows that dance injuries don’t just disappear, he laments; “injuries that you pick up are always with you.”

Franzén getting back to basics with rock climbing

I ask Tommy what he thinks of starting to dance at an early age, he agrees that training earlier means you’ll get more practise at the dance style, however ‘it could mean that you get bored of it earlier.’ You often hear people reminiscing about the past, sighing ‘I really wish I’d kept that up’. Tommy himself is one example of picking dance up at a young age and has years of experience.

One dance forum suggested that all dancers who want to go pro are expected to commit to about 15 hours a week of technique training i.e. ballet, and anything up to twice that during summer months. Tommy explains that taking up technical dance styles that are designed to ‘train your body to look unnatural’ at an early age can be ‘tough on the body in later years.’

The qualified massage therapist, yes you read correctly, feels most comfortable b-boying and conceptualising hip-hop choreography. We start discussing the topic of b-boying, or rather b-girling. He agrees that it is still very much a man’s game “I can’t really think of any female b-girl pioneers off-hand, it would be nice to see more women in that style” adding “you get a lot of b-girls that dance like men.

“It is nice sometimes to see men dance like men and women dance like women.”

Most of the male pioneers of B-boying are old school battlers who stand for the East coast or the West coast of America. The U.S. soul and funk movement is where b-boying was given birth. From the hot stepping feet of James Brown, to battle-zone’s like ‘Harlem World’ of 116th street, Harlem. “I Love dancing to old funk tracks, and I look up to East coast and West coast greats like Mr. Wiggles and the guys from Rock Steady Crew.”

Original Article http://www.streetdancespy.com/?p=34#more-34


SYTYCD Season 1’s… Where are we now?

Well this was recorded last November so it’s kind of a bit dated! They used some weird clips of me and Lizzie (well particularly me lol) which would rather qualify as outtakes. Haha! Never mind…. Enjoy!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00hf4f7


Tommy to perform a solo piece at The Place Theatre in the show E.D.D!!!

I’m creating, alongside Supple (SYTYCD choreographer and Got To Dance creative director), a show called EDD!!, which is 20 minute solo piece for myself. The show will be on the 11th June 8pm at The Place Theatre in London for one night only as a part of a double bill. Book your tickets now!

http://www.theplace.org.uk/8663/whats-on/mickael-marso-riviere-supple-tommy-franzen.html


ZooNation’s “Some Like It Hip Hop” trailer. Tickets on sale now!

The tickets are finally on sale for ZooNation’s Some Like It Hip Hop at https://tickets.sadlerswells.com/performances2.asp?ShoID=1354 or call 08444124322.

We are doing a run from 20th October – 19th November at Peacock Theatre in London. The choreographers are Kate Prince, Tommy Franzen, Carrie-Anne Ingrouille, Ryan Chappell,  Duwane Tayler.

 

Watch the trailer!

Behind the scenes.