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High Strung (2016)

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When a hip hop violinist busking in the New York subway encounters a classical dancer on scholarship at the Manhattan Conservatory of the Arts, sparks fly. With the help of a hip hop dance ... See full summary »


Michael Damian



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Keenan Kampa Keenan Kampa ... Ruby
Nicholas Galitzine ... Johnnie
Sonoya Mizuno ... Jazzy
Jane Seymour ... Oksana
Richard Southgate ... Kyle
Paul Freeman ... Kramrovsky
Marcus Emanuel Mitchell ... Hayward (as Marcus Mitchell)
Maia Morgenstern ... Markova
Anabel Kutay ... April
John Silver John Silver ... Krispy
Ian Eastwood Ian Eastwood ... Rik
Comfort Fedoke ... Poptart
Corinne Holt Corinne Holt ... Jett
Lorenzo Cammarota Lorenzo Cammarota ... Tiptoe
Tom Russell Tom Russell ... Jaxson


When a hip hop violinist busking in the New York subway encounters a classical dancer on scholarship at the Manhattan Conservatory of the Arts, sparks fly. With the help of a hip hop dance crew they must find a common ground while preparing for a competition that could change their lives forever. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

dance | leotard | ballet | violin | See All (4) »


See the music. Hear the dance.


Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some thematic elements and mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



Romania | USA



Release Date:

8 April 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Free Dance See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:

$45,255, 10 April 2016

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,000,000, 13 January 2017
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Keenan Kampa, a trained ballerina, was the first choice for the role of Ruby, but when Michael and Janeen Damian contact her and ask her if she had any interest in acting, she was recovering in a hospital from a hip surgery. She had to do three sessions of rehab a day, to get back into ballet shape. See more »


Johnnie: [Dancing tango] Yes, I've been humble since our last meeting which I want to apologize for.
Ruby: You don't have to do that; I was being pushy, when I don't even know you.
Johnnie: [Pulls her close] Do you want to?
See more »


Crank That Sound
Performed by Ian Mohr, Kelly Easter & Christina Schmid
(P) & © 2016 High Strung LLC
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User Reviews

Basically an extended music video
8 May 2018 | by kaparzSee all my reviews

You know how people say about musicals "oh, it's just a bunch of singing for no reason?" This is that, but dancing and violin.

First, the pros: The movie was visually very nice (except for the choice to include strobing lights, which people should really stop doing). The dance sequences were amazing and fun. The climax involved a plot point I didn't see coming. The characters of the hip hop group are great (especially Pop-Tart). The protagonist is likable. There's this whole Fame vibe going on with the Manhattan conservatory. Jane Seymour is in it.


Johnnie is terrible, and at no point did I want Ruby to end up with him. The movie wants to give us dark and brooding, but instead he either : 1. is outright rude to Ruby 2. Comes on EXTREMELY strong, in a very creepy way. They also have no chemistry. The lead dancer in the troupe, Hayward, has more chemistry with Ruby in the few minutes they're on screen together than Johnnie and Ruby do in the whole movie, to the point that I briefly rooted for Hayward and Ruby to kiss.

The dance sequences are all long and basically don't move the plot, at least one lacks explanation (although to some extent the inexplicability was something that kept me going). This movie has very little plot.

The whole plot with the roommate, Jazzy, is never really explained or settled (were we supposed to take that whole thing at face value? That ending felt way too neat, in real life there would definitely be an underlying reason why she did what she did). The movie couldn't quite keep up with the amount of characters it had.

There's a point where two women giggle and squeal and hit each other with pillows, which... look, I haven't met every woman in the world, but grown women who have just met usually don't behave this way.

Watch if you want to watch some really cool dancing, skip if you want to watch a movie for the plot.

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