Dance Tidbits – Flash Mob Dancing

If you ever envisioned yourself as a rising star, dancer or performer, I’ve got the perfect dance for you!  It’s exciting, sensational and spontaneous.  I’m talking about Flash Mob Dancing.  It is a fairly new dance mania that has taken the world by surprise.  To me it’s like the film musicals of the 1950s and 1960s when movies had large numbers of dancers appear in films doing a routine to enhance the theme of the movie.  Now all you have to do is find the next Flash Mob appearance and dance!  But that in itself may be the most interesting part about Flash Mob Dancing.

Flash Mob Dancing is a spontaneous public performance. Usually it is a dance that suddenly appears out of nowhere.  It may start with one person and grow to as many as one hundred people. And  as fast as the performance started, it can quickly disappear.  So you ask, “What is the purpose of Flash Mob Dancing?” Flash Mob Dancing strives to create joy through surprise.  People who participate in Flash Mob Dancing feel like they’ve gotten to be a part of something kind of spectacular.  It is entertainment in its most basic form created for the sake of satire, artistic expression and freedom (because you can just do it).  Now here’s the part you need to know about in order for you to  partake in one of these Flash Mob dances.  Most of these dances are organized by telecommunications, social media and viral emails.  It seems it attracts mostly young people, but almost anyone can be part of  these spontaneous events.

The first Flash Mobs were created in Manhattan, New York in 2003, supposedly by a man named Bill Wasik, Sr. Editor of Harper’s Magazine.  They say the first attempt was unsuccessful after a targeted retail store was tipped off about the plan for people to gather.  Wasik learned from that error and further avoided future errors during the first successful Flash Mob, which was June 17, 2003 at Macy’s Department store.  Wasik sent participants to different staging areas in four Manhattan bars – where they received further instructions about the ultimate event and location just before the event began.  Here is what happened.  More than 130 people converged upon the 9th floor Rug Department of Macy’s, gathering around an expensive rug.  Anyone that was approached by a sales assistant was advised to say that these gatherers lived together in a warehouse on the outskirts of New York and they were shopping for a rug and that they make all their purchase decisions as a group.  Subsequently all 130 people broke out in dance and the rest as they say, is history!

Wasik claims that he created Flash Mobs as a social experiment designed to make fun of hipsters and to highlight the cultural atmosphere of conformity.  It gives people the opportunity to be an “insider” or part of the “next big thing” he further stated.  So if this idea intrigues you and you think it would be fun and exciting to be part of, either be your own leader and get right on it or look around and see where you can join in.  I bet you’ll have a blast either way and an experience you will never forget!

Happy dancing,

Thought Of The Week:

When you focus on possibilities…you will have more opportunities

1 view

Recent Posts

See All


Shane Meuwissen is the Media Specialist for Fordney Foundation.  He is a former dance instructor who know works with his company Slow Motion Dance Videos capture the beauty of dancing. If you would like to learn more about Shane and his video work, visit his website