The Heard Museum's Hoop Dance Championship featured many names familiar to hoop dance fans, including Nakotah LaRance, Tony Duncan, and winner Derrick Suwaima Davis. The Youth Division was won by a possible future star, six-year-old Rito Lopez Jr. (Pima/Apache/Arikara/Hidatsa/Mandan), also known as "RJ."

The video was produced by Lizard Light Productions.

Top American Indian and Canadian First Nation hoop dancers are preparing to enter the competition and win the prestigious title and cash prizes at the two-day competition, in which men and women compete on an equal field.

Over time, the intertribal hoop dance has expanded to incorporate new and creative designs and extremely intricate footwork. Each dancer presents a unique variation of the intertribal hoop dance, weaving in aspects of his or her distinct tradition and culture. Individual routines are presented using as few as four to as many as 50 hoops, which are manipulated to create a variety of designs including animals, butterflies and globes.

Dancers are judged on a slate of five skills – precision, timing/rhythm, showmanship, creativeness and speed.


Responses to " Watch 6-Year-Old Rito Lopez Win World Hoop Dance Contest (Video)"

  1. Joy Alba says:

    That was really amazing. :)

  2. Anonymous says:

    He will grow up to be a strong Man with great skills and the gift of giving blessing

  3. Candy Norcross says:

    This child is an amazing dancer ! He is so full of Spirit ! I watched the video over and over !

  4. Anonymous says:

    This boy has great dance. He will grow up stronge. Don't give up what you do little one.

  5. Unknown says:
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  6. Unknown says:

    Thank You to his teachers..Awesome

  7. Anonymous says:

    Fantastic little guy

  8. Unknown says:

    He is so talented. Love to watch him perform. He will only get better and better.

  9. Tracy says:


  10. Unknown says:

    Amazing!!! So wonderful to see someone so young, so dedicated to this wonderful heritage!

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