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Dive into the Sweat-Drenched Changa Tuki Scene in Caracas

We traveled to South America to uncover the vibrant, and at times controversial culture.

by David Garber
Jan 12 2015, 11:00pm

The city of Caracas in Venezuela is riddled with violence-rocketing muder rates have sparked recent protests across the country-but these crime-ridden headlines do not tell the full story of a vibrant city. Growing in the city's slums is a unique subculture called Changa Tuki-a style of upbeat, aggressive dance music championed by colorfully-dressed DJs and dancers. Local troupes battle each other with a fierce, highly athletic style of dancing, competing for ultimate supremacy.

Both a response to and a reflection of the volatile circumstances that surrounds it, Changa Tuki is often associated with crime and delinquency. In this THUMP Special, we went to Caracas to speak with the scene's leaders and innovators. While they agree that a spirit of rebelliousness is captured in the music's aggressiveness, they insist that Changa Tuki is ultimately a way to show off the talent coming out of the barrios, an escape from poverty, and a form of catharsis. Join us as we dive into this captivating movement defined by fearless ambition and cultural pride.