CHICAGO (CBS) — At first glance, you might think it’s ballet, but this is Hiplet. Pronounced hip-lay, like ballet.

It started in Chicago but now it’s recognized around the world.

In this original report, CBS 2’s Audrina Bigos looks into how it’s impacting a new generation of girls.

“It’s sassy and fun,” said Fallon Perkins. “Hip-hop and ballet together. Those are two of my favorite things.”

Before this, 12-year-old Perkins grew up thinking just wasn’t for her.

“I don’t look like the other dancers so I can’t dance as well as them,” she said.

After seeing Hiplet, everything changed.

“I was like oh my gosh they’re amazing. I want to be just like them,” said Perkins.

The Hiplet dancers at the Chicago Multi-Cultural Dance Center.

Homer Hans Bryant is the creator of Hiplet.

He fused classical pointe technique with hip-hop and urban dance styles. And every girls is classically trained.

This is the only contemporary ballet school in the world that teaches this technique.

A YouTube video of their rehearsal blew up.

“We went from 25 million views to 100 million and now we’re over 5 billion right now,” said Homer.

And now the ladies are in commercials for international brands.

“We’ve been to France. We’ve been to Seoul South Korea, Germany, Spain, the Virgin Islands,” he added. “It’s an empowerment thing. It really is. It takes them to a place they never thought they could go.”

Empowering the next generation of Hiplet.

The Chicago Multi-Cultural Dance Center’s second annual ‘Because We Can’ benefit performance and reception takes place take Sunday, April 29th.

It’ll be at the Museum of Science and Industry.

You can click here for more information on the center’s upcoming benefit.

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