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Sidewalk to the stage: the moments that influenced StalaMuerte's style

From his first breaking experience to his trip to Tokyo, StalaMuerte discusses the milestones that have shaped his life and influenced his style of dance.
Written by François Graz
4 min readPublished on
Some experiences in life stick with us forever and become integral parts of our identity. In One Life, One Dance, led by director Redha Medjellekh, technology gives us the chance to relive these moments. Having previously discovered what inspired Poppin'C, here we join StalaMuerte and learn about the moments that made him.

1. The place he practiced for the first time

Every dancer remembers the place where they perfected their moves. So does Cédric, who's better known as StalaMuerte.
He says: "One day per week I was at Collège des Crosets for non-school activities. Everything started there. My brother showed me the movie Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo. I fell in love with the movement and tried to imitate them right away. I also started to motivate my friends.
A picture from young StalaMuerte wearing a shirt of Tupac Shakur.
StalaMuerte was always interested in hip-hop culture
"We used cardboard that we stuck to the floor to break on. My second big hobby at the time was soccer and there was a training spot at my school. I have a lot of beautiful memories about dancing and playing soccer there."

2. His first show

The transition from the sidewalk to the stage is a life-changing moment for dancers. It's the fruit of intense training and often the real start of their careers.
Stalamuerte, Diablo and the crew at the shooting for One Life, One Dance.
From the sidewalk to the stage: Stala and his crew
"My first performance on the stage of the Rivage of Vevey was a milestone for me. That evening, Mam's Goku and his crew were there and they discovered me," recalls StalaMuerte. "He suggested I join his school K-Unik, where he taught dance. It was a meeting place and he gave us the confidence to create a whole evening of dance performances. My friends and I didn't hesitate. This was the cornerstone for everything that came after."
The connection with Diablo pushed me to another level
Stalamuerte dancing in front of a city projection.
StalaMuerte in One Life, One Dance

3. His favourite spot in Tokyo

While the street dance style may have originated in America, Tokyo quickly established itself as another hotspot that could well become a second epicentre for the culture. For StalaMuerte, the city has had a huge influence on him.
He says: "Tokyo is a city that inspires me for many reasons: the architecture, the humility of the people... ever since my first visit in 2017 I've been fascinated by the place. I feel like it's already in the future, with fashion as well as with music.
"I've been there three times already, for workshops and battles. It's the only city I can imagine moving to – even though I love Switzerland."

4. The short-movie Jusqu'ici tout va bien

"Jusqu'ici tout va bien was a show I did in 2017 that was censored. I adapted it as a short movie together with Cubique, so everybody could see it," he explains. "The message is that no matter where we are from, we all have the same blood in our veins. It's important to encourage people, to stand up if they are discriminated against or become victims of injustice."
Stalamuerte at the shoot for One Life, One Dance.
StalaMuerte has evolved his style over the last 12 years

So far, so good

Commenting on the moments that influenced his style and how he has developed as a dancer over the last 12 years, he says: "These four moments changed my way of dancing and how I perceive things.
"At the Collège des Crosets, I learned breaking. On the stage of the Rivage, I perfected my skills. In Tokyo, I shared my knowledge and in Jusqu'ici tout va bien I shared an important message that really matters to me. This continuity is there because of my passion for dance. I express my daily experiences and emotions when I dance.
"When I started to focus on hip-hop 12 years ago, I started to evolve very quickly. My first battles, travels and workshops helped me to deepen my knowledge. And last, but not least, the connection with Diablo [StalaMuerte's long-time collaborator] pushed me to another level. Our success confirms that."
Want to see more from StalaMuerte? Check out his Flow Control performance in the clip below:

1 min


StalaMuerte shows from all perspectives why he is one of the best dancers in the world.

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