Up to date information about children's entertainment – film, TV, DVD and more…. from founder and president of KIDS FIRST! Ranny Levy

Hip Hop Harry – Your Friend and Mine

Hip Hop Harry is a preschool, dance, musically – based, and live action program designed to entertain, educate and inform children ages 3 to 6. It’s the perfect blend of entertainment and education with a curriculum that addresses social and cognitive learning as well as physical and creative elements. The core tool used in this show is the popular music and dance form known as hip hop.

Hip Hop is one of the major music and dance voices for youth today. Hip Hop includes art, dance, language and music. Equally important, is that it extends across all ethnic, class and gender lines throughout the world. Educators know that children learn more when they are physically engaged and Hip Hop Harry Program does exactly that – using dance and music to reach kids in what I refer to as stealth learning.

Recently, I had the pleasure of visiting with non other than Hip Hop Harry himself. Here’s an excerpt of our conversation:

Ø Hi Hip Hop Harry. You have become quite the TV star, haven’t you. Where do you live?
Ø I live in Los Angeles. Thank you. I can’t believe it. I love everybody’s support. It’s a beautiful thing. We’ve been very blessed and very lucky. We have beautiful kids on the show and beautiful music as well.
Ø Tell me more about your show. How did it first come about.
Ø My good buddy Clark Brookes who created the show realized that the power of hip hop’s call and response goes right into helping kids retain so much knowledge. His nephew was having trouble with his homework. He realized that by putting the lessons into rhymes that he retained the lessons better. So, we use the call and response, lyrics, repetition and dancing all help kids learn things better. It’s amazing what music does. You can look at your textbook with the same information but if you hear it in song, you will retain what that song is telling you. The songs cover everything from hygiene, all the way to sea creatures.
Ø What are your plans for the summer season. Is there anything new coming up? You have a couple of new DVDs that just came out, right?
Ø Yes we do. We have two DVDs in stores right now. One is called “Fun With Friends” and the other is called “Move Those Feet.” We’ve done a string of shows, live tours. I love the live shows – we’ve got a dance called Do the Harry that is something to see when the whole audience is doing it. We’ve got a great summer ahead of us. We’re on Discovery Kids and The Learning Channel still. But this summer – we’ve got more live shows.
Ø I love the dancing on your show. Where did you learn to dance so well?
Ø I like the dancing too. These kids are incredible. They’re keeping me polishing up my own dance techniques. I was always dancing. Felt it as a cub, around the time of break dancing – which I grew up – I loved everything that’s new in dancing I like. It’s a beautiful art form.
Ø Other than the dancing. what is your favorite thing about your show. And why? Being able to help the kids learn so much about life’s beautiful things through hip hop music and being able to show that hip hop is a beautiful thing and has a potential for beauty. It goes beyond stereotypes. And shows that it’s something the youth of today like. To be able to teach through music I can’t ask for more.
Ø Tell me a bit more about the live show.
Ø It’s me and my dancers – some of the hardest working dancers out there. We bring the magic that you see on TV to the stage. The songs from the show are performed live in front of the audience while me and my dancers all dance to them. It’s an incredible feeling to have the energy audience – it’s fun for everyone.
Ø You are such an upbeat personality. What advice do you have for kids today? How can someone keep such a positive attitude towards life like you do?
Ø Life is what you want to make it. I would tell the kids of today, find the good in everything as best as they can. When times call for a smile, smile a good smile. Keep a thirst for education and good music. Then, it’s hard not to smile. And remember to exercise – best done through dance.
Ø Anything else you would like to share with our readers?
Ø Usually with radio interviews I come with an improve rhyme. Here is one for you:

“One for the flow, two for the verse,
I’m Hop Hop Harry and I put KIDS FIRST!
Rhymes are food for thought and I eat to live.
And I use these rhymes to teach the kids.”
Lovely, thanks Hip Hop Harry – I hope you can come perform at our KIDS FIRST! Film Festival sometime, in some city.
Share this page on:
Entertainment News for Kids:
Join KIDS FIRST! on Twitter Join KIDS FIRST! on YouTube Join KIDS FIRST! on Instagram Join KIDS FIRST! on Tik Tok Join KIDS FIRST! on Facebook