Put Bruno Mars in front of a camera. Turn on "That's What I Like." Let him dance his talented little feet off. Add a bit of creative animation.
Watch the view count explode.
It's so simple, and so perfect.
I'm definitely not the first to compare Mars' moves to Michael Jackson's, and the "That's What I Like" video only makes the comparison more apt: It's reminiscent of Jackson's classic "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" vid. I have a feeling that's no accident.
Both of them are such natural movers. Both of them are having SO MUCH FUN. And #TWIL.
If you need me today—or tomorrow, or all weekend, let's be real—I'll just be watching Bruno on repeat, K? Byeeeeee!
Imagine your ideal dance party. It probably features infectious tunes, an amazing crew and plenty of space to let loose. In fact, it might be safe to say that your ideal dance party looks exactly like this new class video from Will "Willdabeast" Adams.
Shot by Kenny Washington and choreographed to Bruno Mars' "24k Magic," this video is the definition of "good vibes only." It also happens to feature tons of dancers we're totally obsessed with, including Baily Sok, Janelle Ginestra, Sean Lew, Jade Chynoweth, Trinity Inay and Kaycee Rice.
Can we just take a second to talk about how Ginestra is SLAYING this choreo? She even dressed the dorky, old-school part, in mismatched shoe laces and what appears to be a vintage tennis shirt. Aside from that, her feet move so fast that she looks sped up. But we know Ginestra's performance is 100% real.
Dear Chris Martin,
Hello. It's me. Beyoncé.
I have this discomfiting sense that things are...awkward between us. And since I didn't want to disturb you last night after the Super Bowl—I heard a series of snuffles and moans coming from your dressing room, and assumed you were caring for a sick pet or nursing some sort of terrible rapid-onset head cold—I thought I'd write you an apology.
I'm sorry I completely dominated your halftime show.
I'm sorry my "guest appearance" made your headline act look a bit like a 6-year-old's birthday party.
I'm sorry you ended up being a third wheel on what was supposed to be your night.
But you had to know this was coming, didn't you?
Surely you understood, when I was announced as a halftime show guest, that there is no such thing as a "guest" act by Beyoncé? That wherever I appear, I am immediately recognized by all present as the Supreme Being? (See: my recent turn on "Lip Sync Battle," in which, with approximately three hair flips, I reduced Channing Tatum—a far more formidable rival than you, if we're being honest, which I always am—to dust.)
You must have guessed, when I dropped my genius "Formation" video one day before the Super Bowl, that some serious mischief was afoot? Didn't you gaze upon the vid's inspired choreography (shout-out to the brilliant Dana Foglia, JaQuel Knight and Chris Grant) and think, "Wow, those 'Formation' formations sure would look great on a giant football field! They'd basically turn Beyoncé into the captain of the most epic dance team that ever was!"?
And so they did.
I shouldn't take all the credit, though. Again, complete honesty is my policy, and therefore I have to thank Bruno Mars for his valiant, albeit unsuccessful, attempt to defeat me in our halftime dance battle. What an adorable little man he is! What a wonderful viral moment that made! His Run DMC-style chain necklace sparkled with at least half the brilliance of my custom DSQARED2 Michel Jackson-esque military jacket, didn't it?
Here's a lesson you should learn, Chris: Don't show up to the big game alone. Four middle-aged men in psychedelic flower jeans will never be a match for me and my #squad of devastatingly fierce ladies. (So much love to Ebony Williams and Ksyn and Jasmine Harper and the rest of you beautiful, beautiful people.)
But I digress; this was meant to be a moment of contrition, not of instruction. And so please believe me when I say that there was no malicious intent here. I am simply incapable of being anything less than mind-bogglingly, earth-shatteringly, internet-breakingly fantastic.
Did you notice my hand on your back at the conclusion of the show, Chris? Did you sense that I was trying to comfort you, to reassure you that, come tomorrow, nobody would remember your set anyway, because they'd all be too busy dissecting the political implications of my girls' Black Panther costuming?
And so it has come to pass. But fear not, Chris: I've already reserved tickets for you for my Formation Tour. Because I know how thrilled you were when that tour announcement dropped immediately following what was, in theory, your halftime show. I heard you mutter that little congratulatory oath (I assume it was congratulatory?) under your breath as the world was made aware of my next great undertaking. I saw your hand tense on the mic (in happy excitement, I'm sure?) as any eyes that remained on you were wrenched, unceremoniously and inexorably, to me.
I'm sorry, Chris. I really am. But more importantly: YOU'RE WELCOME.
Ah, the Super Bowl halftime show. For dance fans, it's, well, the Super Bowl of live performances. It's the glorious moment when literally hundreds of millions of people see 12 solid minutes of dancers (and, OK, giant musical acts) being amazing.
Of course, not every halftime show is a dancestravaganza. I mean, for what felt like 100 years following 2004's Nipplegate (oh, I so want to hashtag that, but it's FROM A PRE-HASHTAG WORLD, GUYS), the Super Bowl powers that be chose old rock-and-roll headliners, who were less inclined to get their dance on and more inclined to, um, sit at pianos.
But other years? Other years, we got lucky. Other years, we got MJ. Or Britney. Or Madonna. OR BEYONCÉ.
In honor of this Sunday's sure-to-be dance-filled spectacular (Beyyyyyy we're so glad you're back!), we put together a little #FBF list of the danciest moments in Super Bowl halftime history. And it starts in the 90s, which is when the halftime show as we know it really became a thing. (Before that, it was mostly just marching bands, believe it or not.)
1991: New Kids on the Block
OK, yes: There's an awkward Disney "It's a Small World" opening. But push through it, because afterward we get the slickly choreographed beauty of that glorious 90s phenomenon, the boy band:
1993: Michael Jackson
Here's what's most amazing about this performance, which essentially pioneered the modern Super Bowl halftime spectacle: MJ JUST STOOD THERE FOR A SOLID MINUTE. He was so charismatic that that was literally all it took to drive the crowd insane. But then he started dancing, and—I'll shut up now. Just watch him:
2001: Aerosmith, 'N Sync, Britney Spears, Mary J. Blige, Nelly
Can you tell that MTV had started presenting the halftime show at this point? Basically their approach was to take all the people who had top 40 hits and throw them onstage together. Luckily, in 2001, that group included both 'N Sync and Britney, which meant we were in for some solid choreography (THE "BYE BYE BYE" DANCE <3<3<3):
2004: Janet Jackson, Justin Timberlake (et al)
Yeah, Nelly and Kid Rock and the artist then known as Diddy also performed. But this one was all about the dance stylings of Janet and Justin—not to mention the appearance of one infamous, star-adorned nipple (yes, it's in this video, so proceed with school/work-appropriate caution):
2011: The Black Eyed Peas, Usher
Oof, the post-Janet boob years were long, dull and dance-less. (The Who? Bruce Springsteen? Tom Petty? The Rolling Stones? At least Dad was happy.) But then the Black Eyed Peas flew in on their futuristic stripper poles and brought choreography—specifically, choreography of the fluorescent-light-suit variety—back, as did one of our favorite MJ protégés, Usher:
2012: Madonna, Nicki Minaj, M.I.A., Cee-Lo Green
2014: Bruno Mars, Red Hot Chili Peppers
I'll admit it: After the amazingness of 2013's halftime show, I came into this one with low expectations. But Bruno Mars' high-energy, old-school choreography was surprisingly delightful, wasn't it?
2015: Katy Perry, Missy Elliott
So, what dance goodies will BeyBey and Bruno Mars (and, um, Coldplay, I guess) bring us this year? We'll have a full recap right here on Monday morning, of course.
And with that: Go forth into Super Bowl weekend, friends! Enjoy the dancing! Maybe enjoy the football, too, if it's your thing! Definitely enjoy lots of nachos!
Though dance often idolizes youth, we at Dance Spirit are equally enamored of any elderly person who can really get down. We love dancing grannies and grandpas because they continuously show us that age aint nothin' but a number.
Behold: Oldtown Funk. What do you get when you take Bruno Mars' infectiously danceable song "Uptown Funk" and then turn it on its ear so that instead of being performed by sexy soul singers, it's performed by swaggering seniors?
This. This is what you get.
"Oldtown Cover" was produced by Alex Boye' and features Jean Elliot's "Golden Girls" (aka The Dancing Grandmas). Apparently these women are well known in Utah for their performances at basketball games. Yas ladies! Hopefully we'll all move as well as these folks when we're even half their age. Enjoy!
Every high school has one—or, if it's lucky, more than one: The Cool Teacher™.
You know who I'm talking about. She's the chemistry whiz who's unafraid to show her love for Lady Gaga. Or the history buff who brings in cheese feasts for his AP classes (seriously—that was the signature move of my high school's Cool Teacher).
But the students of A. Maceo Smith New Tech High School in Dallas, TX, are luckier than most. Because their Cool Teacher, theater/arts guru Scot Pankey? He's choreographing color-coordinated hallway dance parties to Bruno Mars' "Uptown Funk."
And if that sounds like "Glee" to you, it's because it basically is. Mr. Pankey even looks like Mr. Schue. (And if you watch the video carefully, you can totally pick out the Rachel Berry of the group. Oh, Rachel.)
The resulting video is five minutes of pure unadulterated joy. Even the kids who don't seem all that into this dancing stuff can't keep themselves from smiling.
Go ahead: Let them uptown funk you up, uptown funk you up.
OK, so we've had a day to think it over—to relive the magic through GIFs, clips and discussion boards. It's about time we take a minute to appreciate Bruno Mars and his epic Super Bowl halftime show.
Dear Bruno Mars,
Thanks for the fancy footwork...
That's right: Bruno Mars' band members double as his backup dancers. (Courtesy MTV.com)
...for that oh-so-smooth drop split...
...for the body rolls...
...for the spirit fingers...
Although, Sparky from Bring It On may be able to give you a few pointers... (Courtesy MTV.com)
...and for your inspiring performance of "Just The Way You Are," aka the anthem of good boyfriends everywhere.
Be still my heart... (courtesy USA Today)
Oh, and thank you for inspiring some audience members at home to get up and dance, too:
(Shout out to People for that glorious collection of Vines.)
We know that Beyoncé was a tough act to follow, and we think that you did a downright respectable job.
(Didn't catch the halftime show? We've got you covered:)
OK, Buzzfeed, we're still a little upset with you for ragging on Center Stage. But we've got to hand it to you: "A Student Spent Three Months Dancing Across China to a Bruno Mars Song" is quite a treasure.
Thank you for introducing us to this guy (aka Jake Gaba, aka our new favorite person):
Jake Gaba is a student who spent 100 days in China studying Mandarin. He wanted to document his journey and felt that still shots weren't enough. So instead, he filmed himself dancing to Bruno Mars' "Treasure" throughout the country. The result? Epic:
Can't handle his awesomeness? Walk away. Just walk away.