Is hip-hop alternative? Or does it just have trouble getting gigs at the Opera House? Whether you’re up to speed or yet to be sold on the genre, the Platform Hip Hop Festival is returning to the Carriageworks' concrete halls for its fourth year to educate your senses. With Nick Power in the papers calmly elucidating the heritage of strong women in Aussie hip-hop, and lithe Sydney Dance Company director Rafael Bonachela praising breakdancing’s vitality on the same page, it seems a lot less like alternative, and more like the rest of Sydney has finally caught up.
If you're new to the genre, there's plenty of room to learn as you go.The festival offers a series of free Hip Hop classes every Saturday, with sessions for dance and beat-boxing. If you're past just getting started, you also can check out the masterclasses run by B*Boy Storm. There's photography in the foyer, Saturday Graffiti tours around Newtown and Redfern if you prefer your art in situ, and all-day festivals-within-the-festival Freak the Technique and Platform Rocks the Block. Most events are free, all of them appeal and none leave much excuse for missing out.