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April 1, 20151 month ago

Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival Celebrates 10 Years

Milestone Event Welcomes an Originator of Hip-Hop

Hartford, Conn. – The 10th annual Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival returns this spring from April 9 to April 12, 2015, and will be headlined by DJ Kool Herc (Clive Campbell), a Jamaican-born American DJ who is credited as one of the originators of hip-hop music in the early 1970s. This year’s event will again feature two nights of concerts, plus an extensive lineup of lectures, workshops, panel discussions and films as part of the weekend-long academic study of the music and subculture of the hip-hop genre. The event, free and open to the public, culminates with performances from several international hip-hop artists.

DJ Kool Herc, inspired by James Brown, developed his upbeat art as an alternative to gang violence that began to sprout in his hometown of the Bronx. He is also influential in the introduction of b-boy and b-girl dancing to hip-hop culture. In the early 1980s, the media began to call this style “breakdance,” which in 1991 the New York Times called “an art as demanding and inventive as mainstream dance forms like ballet and jazz.” In 2006, the Smithsonian Institute included memorabilia from DJ Kool Herc in its exhibition commemorating hip-hop, as one of the originators of the genre.

This year’s 10th Anniversary Festival features performances by artists representing over a dozen different countries. The final show concludes with a special DJ set by DJ Kool Herc.  Other highlights of this year’s festival include classes and panels, film screenings, a b-boy/b-girl battle and exhibition; an urban art exhibition, and spoken word performances. For a detailed schedule, visit:  For the Facebook event page, click here.  For the Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival on Twitter, follow @HipHopBantam.

About the Festival

The Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival, founded by Trinity students in 2006, is the largest festival of its kind in the United States.  The festival continues to be organized by students in association with Nomadic Wax, World Hip Hop Market, Temple of Hip Hop, Underground Coalition/Zulu Nation 860, and Notable Productions.  Past performers include Talib Kweli (United States); K’Naan (Somalia); Jean Grae (U.S./South Africa), Blitz the Ambassador (Ghana); Brother Ali (United States); Comrade Fatso (Zimbabwe); Les Nubians (France/Cameroon); Sam the Kid (Portugal), dead prez (United States); KRS-One and Grandmaster Caz (United States); among many other national and international hip-hop artists and academics.


About Trinity College

Founded in Hartford, Connecticut, in 1823, Trinity College ( is an independent, nonsectarian liberal arts college with over 2,200 students from 44 states and 62 countries. It is home to the eighth-oldest chapter of Phi Beta Kappa in the United States. The faculty and alumni include recipients of the Pulitzer Prize, the MacArthur award, Guggenheims, Rockefellers and other national academic awards. Trinity students integrate meaningful academic and leadership experience at all levels on the College’s celebrated campus, in the Capital City of Hartford, and in communities all over the world.

March 27, 20151 month ago

Jeff Chang and Charlie Ahearn to Feature at 2015 Festival

Jeff Chang and Charlie Ahern will be among the featured presenters at the 2015 Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival on April 9-12, 2015.

Jeff Chang is the author of the seminal hip hop history Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop as well as his newest work Who We Be and Total Chaos: The Art & Aesthetics of Hip Hop.  Chang last appeared at the festival in 2007. He will moderate a panel entitled “Hip Hop: How Far Have We Come?”

Charlie Ahearn will be present for a screening of his classic hip hop film Wild Style and will present a Q&A session after the film with Brian Coleman. Ahearn will also debut his short film about the 2007 Trinity Festival.

In addition to the Wild Style Q&A with Ahearn, Coleman will also lead a panel “Preserving Efforts: Documenting Hip Hop History” with Chang and Ben Oritz from the Cornell Hip Hop Collection. Coleman is a hip hop historian and author of Rakim Told Me, Check the Technique and Check the Technique Volume 2.


March 27, 20141 year ago

Prolific Lineup at Trinity’s 9th International Hip-Hop Festival

Talib Kweli Will Headline 2014 Event

Hartford, Conn. – The 9th annual Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival returns this spring from April 3to April 5, 2014, and will be headlined by Talib Kweli, an internationally acclaimed lyricist and hip-hop artist.  The 2014 event will feature two nights of concerts, plus an extensive lineup of lectures, workshops, panel discussions and films.  The event, free and open to the public, will feature performances from artists around the globe. 

Dubbed “hip-hop’s cerebral emcee” by Pitchfork in 2004, the Brooklyn-born Kweli was raised in a family of educators.  His mother is an English professor at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York and his father is an administrator at Adelphi University on Long Island.  Kweli attended Cheshire Academy, a boarding school in Connecticut, and he later studied experimental theater at New York University before pursuing his career.

Click here to listen to “I Try” by Talib Kweli ft. Mary J. Blige.

Click here to listen to “Around My Way,” by Talib Kweli, ft. John Legend.

Click here to listen to “Soon the New Day,” by Talib Kweli ft. Norah Jones.


Other performers this year include Quilomboarte Collective (Mexico, Domincan Republic, U.S.A., Spain); Vox Sambou (Haiti); Shokanti (Cape Verde); Native Sun (UK/Mozambique); Black Noise (South Africa); Mandeep Sethi (USA/India); Jaro Cossiga (Czech Republic); and DJ Boo (U.S.A./Philippines). 


Highlights of this year’s festival include classes and panels with Trinity and outside academics, film screenings and director Q&A’s, a Boy/B-Girl battle and exhibition; an urban art exhibition, spoken word performances; a DMC regional DJ battle, which is a qualifier for the U.S. National DJ battle and international finals, among other events.  For a detailed schedule, visit:

9th Annual Festival Returns in April 2014

The 9th annual Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival returns this spring from April 3rd to 5th, 2014. The theme for 2014 is “Youth Empowerment and Resistance through Hip-Hop” and will feature three days of lectures, films, workshops and panel discussions. Highlighting the event will be a spoken word event, regional talent showcase, the Friday night international b-boy battle, the DMC Hartford regional DJ battle and finishing off with the main concert on Saturday night, April 5th. Check back for the full schedule for the most up to date details.

April 2, 20132 years ago

8th Annual Trinity College International Hip Hop Festival: Official Trailer (2013)

Check out the latest trailer for the 8th annual Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival featuring footage from last year’s event including Native Sun, Brother Ali, Los Rakas, the Cornel West theory, Sweatshop Union and all the amazing b-boys!

Check out the performers from this year’s festival at

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