AAU Has the Moves


Emerson Aquino. Courtesy of Dairia Kymber Harvin.

“Music makes you lose control.” The incredible Missy Elliott said it best and Academy of Art University students agree. Every Friday night at 6:30 p.m., you can find a group of students (including myself) finding the rhythm to your favorite tunes at 620 Sutter’s hip-hop dance class.

Taught by Emerson Aquino, this hip-hop class is one of the many classes that are part of student recreation and fitness. “I really like teaching here,” Aquino said. “Everyone that comes seems like they’re really trying. I appreciate that.”

Aquino has cast some of the dancers from the Academy into his own dance company called Funkanometry SF. He also teaches hip-hop dance at City Dance Studio on 10 Colton Street in San Francisco.

This class has led a fellow student to start the Academy of Art University Hip-Hop Dance Team. Giannarco “Gio” Haro is a visual development major that came to the Academy with several layers of dance background, including instructing his high school dance team. 

Efrem Whitaker

Efrem Whitaker. Courtesy of Dairia Kymber Harvin.

Emerson Aquino

Emerson Aquino. Courtesy of Dairia Kymber Harvin.

After noticing that the Academy lacked a hip-hop dance team, he decided to file the paperwork and start one himself. Haro truly admires Aquino for his choreography skills. “He teaches us certain steps,” Haro said. “And how to express ourselves … certain emotions we have to create.”

Energy, sweat and a good time are the components of this dance class. You do not need any dance experience to be a part of this class. Come out and have some fun with Emerson Aquino and your fellow Academy classmates!



Academy students performing. Courtesy of Dairia Kymber Harvin.