Alice Barker is 102, but when she was young, she was a chorus dancer in Harlem. Watch and listen to more American vernacular music and dance at Celluloid Improvisation (autoplays swing music. via).
At the age of 50, Maya Plisetskaya danced to Ravels Bolero, choreographed by Maurice Bejart. At 61 and with arms like flowing ribbon she danced the Dying Swan [more inside]
How a pro-domme, a Russian diplomat, U.S. intelligence and Mary Tyler Moore’s landscaper conspired to create a dance classic.
What's that you say? You want a 20 year old video of a nearly nude Jason Statham dancing on a rock pyramid in a music video embodying the worst excesses of the early 90s British Dance Scene? Of course you do! (Hat tip Mathowie, Possibly NSFW due to oiled speedo gyrations)
Ghetto Kids Dancing Sitya Loss New Ugandan music (SLYT) Joyfull music, kids dancing. Made me smile, will make you smile too.
In 2014, the Montreal Swing Riot hosted a dance-off: Lindy Hop dancers vs street dancers. Teams introduced themselves with a display of their own styles, then traded off dancing in their own style for a few sets. The fun part, though, was the next challenge: each team had to dance to the other's music on the fly. The results are well worth watching.
Start your weekend right with this supercut of dance-scenes from 80+ different movies, from youtuber MsTabularasa and set to Walk the Moon's "Shut Up and Dance."
Swedish sign language interpreter, Tommy Krångh, interpreted and danced his way through a song performed by singer Magnus Carlsson on Melodifestivalen.
Zaouli dance from the Ivory Coast and Captain Hook & Astrix - Bungee Jump mashup is the latest vid for the Burning Mountain Festival held in the Engadin Valley, Switzerland. Zaouli, a popular mask dance, was created in the fifties. The Gouro ethnic group is the midwestern part of Ivory Coast / Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa. According to what people say, there are diverse legends regarding the origin of the Zaouli mask and dance; yet, all come to the agreement that such legends were inspired by a very beautiful girl - 'Dzela Lou Zaouli' - daughter of Zaouli."
Soleá follows an aspiring flamenco guitarist around the streets of Sevilla. "Ten years playing for dancers, ten years playing for singers, and, afterward, you can begin to become a soloist." A short video from The New Yorker (alt link).
This video of The Apache Relay song Katie Queen of Tennessee is great - kids from the Nashville Dance Center dancing their hearts out while the band plays a sweet country song in a 19th-century barn owned by Vince Gill and Amy Grant. And the kids aren't even dancing to the song.
The average fit male in the United States can do eight pull-ups. The average fit female can do one. For this woman, numbers are kind of beside the point.
Singer/songwriter Sia's dancer mini-me, Maddie Ziegler, and actor Shia LaBeouf put on a captivating (and to some controversial) performance in the video Elastic Heart
Alya and Gael of Cirque Du Soleil demonstrate why trust is worth it. (SLYT)
Maya Angelou's posthumous hip hop project Caged Bird Songs, has a new music video for Harlem Hopscotch.
Seven months ago Steven and David Dewaele, better known as Belgian electronic duo and mashup kings Soulwax / 2manyDJs, put the finishing touches on their "Radio Soulwax" Project. In addition to being the band's nom-de-tour, RS has existed for the past several years as a series of mixes-and-music-videos. For this last hurrah, the Dewaeles released a video for the complete 2002 album that made them famous, As Heard On Radio Soulwax, Part Two. The film GIF- and Terry Gilliam-ifies hundreds of album covers, and can be seen here [NSFW in spots]. Inside, find a complete list of the RS mixes with the band's comments on each one. [more inside]
An amateur dance group of five dads break out their Christmas sweaters and best dance moves to the beat of a remixed "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy". (SLYT)
Mistakes were made - a Viennese snippet of Jerome Robbins' The Concert (or The Perils of Everybody) (wiki)
The pointe shoe in ballet is a piece of technology critical to the performance of dance. While mechanically tough, its design is simple and flexible enough for personal modification and tailoring to the individual dancer's needs. Spanish artist Lesia Trubat has taken the pointe shoe into the 21st century, sewing in LilyPad Arduino controllers and sensors and integrating their operation with iOS, allowing the dancer to turn pressure and motion into a dynamic and novel expression of this centuries-old art form.
I start the music, take his hands and start leading him, swaying them back and forth. And he lets go of me. He's gonna wing it as he was prone to do when he was younger. Breathing on his own for the last time, Geoffrey Holder, eyes closed, performs his last solo to Bill Evans playing Fauré's Pavane. From his deathbed. The arms take flight, his beautiful hands articulate through the air, with grace. I whisper "shoulders" and they go into an undulating shimmy, rolling like waves. His Geoffrey Holder head gently rocks back and forth as he stretches out his right arm to deliver his trademark finger gesture, which once meant "you can't afford this" and now is a subtle manifestation of pure human spirit and infinite wisdom. His musical timing still impeccable, bouncing off the notes, as if playing his own duet with Evan's piano. Come the finale, he doesn't lift himself off the bed as he planned; instead, one last gentle rock of the torso, crosses his arms and turns his head to the side in a pose worthy of Pavlova. All with a faint, gentile smile.Leo Holder talks about his father's last dance.
My Africa Is Lagos: WeCyclers. The Floating School. Avante Garde Fashion Photography. Dakar: Le Journal Rappe. Malika Surf Camp. Sunu Street Project. Diaspora: Sonic Diaspora. Os Kuduristas. Technologie Democracy. (via)
The great Geoffrey Holder died on Sunday at the age of 84 Mr. Holder was born in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad on August 1st, 1930 and danced with his brother Boscoe’s dance troupe as a child. He arrived in New York in 1952 at the invitation of the legendary choreographer, Agnes de Mille and, to pay his fare, he sold 20 of his paintings. [more inside]
Music historian/nerd Neil Transpontine's blog "History is made at night" covers the "politics of dancing and musicking" -- from the riots at Lou Reed's concerts in Italy in 1975, demonstrations against the "anti-rave" Criminal Justice & Public Order Act of 1994 (UK) to present-day protests in New Orleans against a proposed noise ordinance. [more inside]
The exhaustively researched Hollywood history podcast You Must Remember This (Previously) presents a two part episode focusing on Madonna's use of classic Hollywood imagery and references as a form of conceptual art and her early attempts to trade pop idol success for movie stardom within the context of two high-profile relationships with Sean Penn and Warren Beatty. Episode One. Episode Two. Meanwhile, Todd In The Shadows creates video reviews for every movie Madonna was ever in. So far he's done Desperately Seeking Susan, Shanghai Surprise, A Certain Sacrifice, and Who's That Girl.
Vice interviews the shit out of Ben Carr, full-time dancer for the Mighty Mighty Bosstones since 1983.
The dance of the peacock spider "With their ornately-colored bodies, rhythmic pulsations, and booty-shaking dance moves, male peacock spiders attract the attention of spectating females as well as researchers. One such animal behavior specialist, Madeline Girard, collected more than 30 different peacock spider species from the wilds of Australia and brought them back to her lab at UC Berkeley. Under controlled conditions, she recorded their unique dances in the hopes of deciphering what these displays actual say to a female spider and how standards differ between species.'
The Smart car folks have come up with an idea to make crosswalks a little safer (SLYT, Smart Blue), the Dancing Traffic Light.
How pointe shoes get made, at Freed's of London (official shoe makers of the Royal Ballet). Has that whet your appetite? You can try your hand at the Royal Ballet's company class (or the Bolshoi's, if that is more your speed). If you never got a chance to take ballet as a kid, be inspired by the adult beginner ballet students of Kathy Mata. [more inside]
NOLA bounce artist and rapper Nicky Da B is dead. Nicki was best known for his colorful, aggressively infectious music and videos, including Hot Potato Style (previously), Express Yourself with Diplo (previously), and his collaboration with photographer Clayton Cubitt Go Loko (NSFW, strobe and flashes warning)
If you're alone and you need a friend
Someone to make you forget your problems
Just come along baby
Take my hand
I'll be your lover tonight
Someone to make you forget your problems
Just come along baby
Take my hand
I'll be your lover tonight
"The new Energy Elixir and “sparkling future pop sensation” QT has finally debuted its new jingle “Hey QT” in full. It’s as if the drink’s creators, SOPHIE and A. G. Cook, harnessed the most cloying earworms and pop tropes of the 21st century, shaped them into slightly grotesque manifestations, and then teamed up with the best marketers in the business to optimize it for mass consumption. The result? A song that provides its listeners with crisp focus, pure energy, and razor-sharp reaction." [more inside]
Dancehall in Japan. A short mini documentary from the Scene Unseen project at #ListenForYourself. [more inside]
Kiesza's Hideaway video is a fantastic single-shot tribute to 1990s dance. (She even broke a rib shooting the video.) But check out what happens when Russian performance duo Bonia and Kuzmich (Mikhail Kuzmin and Julia Starikova) (Боня и Кузьмич) created a tribute video.
Strangely mesmerising geese herding on horseback to Mongolian throat singing. From French equestrian theatre impresario Bartabas, who staged a horse version of Rite of Spring (video starts at prettiest part). Follow up with sheep herding with horse and dog as terribly French art video.
Dave Holmes (yes that Dave Holmes) re-vists the hit songs and music videos of July 1983
The Latvian Song and Dance Festival has existed in some form or another since 1873, held roughly every five years. Along with similar festivals in Estonia and Lithuania, it has been recognized by UNESCO as one of the world's Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. The approximately 35,000 amateur singers and dancers who travel from all around Latvia to perform the weeklong festival comprise 1.5% of the country's entire population. The centerpiece of the festival is always the final night, when the full complement of roughly 20,000 singers perform the most iconic Latvian folk songs a cappella. In 2013, a song performed on the final night was "Līgo" (a word meaning both "sway" and "summer solstice festival"). But for sheer spine-tingling pleasure, 2008's "Gaismas pils" ("Castle of Light") can't be beat.
Globe Trot (50 filmmakers, 23 countries, 1 dance) A fun little romp around the world as over 50 people do a cool dance that combined with sharp editing can't help but make you feel good. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
For those of you born in the 80s or later, this is what counted for primetime entertainment back in our day.
Milena Sidorova is a soloist in the Dutch National Ballet. The Spider. Full Moon (aka the Pillow Dance). Reality Conundrum.