Urban-legendary Hip Hop performer, dancer, and teacher Akim Funk Buddha is one of five American artists to win a US / Japan Creative Artists' Program grant for a three-month residency / cultural exchange in Japan. The grant is awarded by the U.S. Japan Friendship Commission in conjunction with the National Endowment for the Arts.
Akim was selected twice to be a Hip Hop ambassador and awarded a competitive Hip Hop fellowship by the Next Level program, an initiative of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. In 2018 he went to Azerbaijan and in 2022 he went to Ireland.
Akim is a multi-faceted performance artist with talents ranging from high-energy Classic Hip Hop rhymes, beat-boxing and Mongolian throat-singing, to body-balancing, martial arts, tap dance, and circus arts. Akim creates borderless performance art fusing sounds and movements. He is known for his holistic Approach to Hip Hop, drawing from a full spectrum of cultural traditions and artistic disciplines.
Akim's exceptional stage productions transcend borders and has featured at prestigious venues such as The Kennedy Center (Washington DC), and throughout New York City including Central Park Summer Stage, The Blue Note ,The Whitney Museum (VH1 Hip Hop Honors), Lincoln Center Outdoors, Joe's Pub, The Winter Garden, La MaMa Theater & The Rubin Museum. His shows are featured annually at BAMCafé Live, The Brooklyn Academy of Music.
He won the award for Best Choreography in New York's Fringe Festival where he choreographed for actors in the musical "Average Asian American.” Akim has made appearances on The Late Show with David Letterman and Sesame Street, and can be seen as an M.C. in the award winning Documentary “FreeStyle - The Art of Rhyme”.
Akim has collaborated with a range of ground-breaking artists. To name a few, Bobby McFerrin at Carnegie Hall, Tony Award winning Director Bill T Jones, touring the world with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance company performing as throat singer/vocalist, beat boxer, multi-percussionist, and dancer.
Akim was also the specialized casting agent for dancers on the film Once Again by Boaz Yakin (winner of the Audience Award at the Tallinn Film Fest).
Akim is an advocate for alternative methods in learning. He has developed innovative teaching methods that utilize both movement and sound for kids with learning differences. Akim believes that through the power of music and performance, fear and ignorance can be conquered and the world is brought a bit closer together.
Akim Funk Buddha