You're probably well aware that Ian Eastwood has spent 2015 putting out videos for his "Adultlessons" dance mixtape. We loved his Valentine's Day drop, featuring leading lady Megan Batoon, and he even mentioned the mixtape when we interviewed him for his July/August cover shoot with Keenan Kampa. Now, there are three videos out.
The latest is choreography set to Big Sean's rapping in Justin Bieber's "No Pressure." In the original music video, the camera cuts to Big Sean and away from Eastwood—which is kind of cool because you get to see Big Sean emphasize his lyrics with his own movements. But it's also kind of sad because who wants to tear their eyes away from Eastwood?
This video features what I can only imagine is Eastwood's insanely chill groove during the rap break—something he made while the camera was focused elsewhere. And of course, it looks amazing.
We can't wait until the next video comes out!
I say this publicly and without shame: I, Margaret Fuhrer, a fully-grown woman, spent much of my weekend watching Justin Bieber's "Purpose: The Movement" dance movie on repeat.
Look: I've had my ups and downs with Bieber over the years. We all have. He knows it. But you have to respect this insanely ambitious, insanely dance-y, insanely GOOD new project, which dropped Saturday. Leave it to Bieber to both over-promise and over-deliver on a premise that sounded iffy when it was first announced (dance videos for all 13 of the new album's tracks? Okaaaay) and now just seems brilliant (13 AMAZING DANCE VIDEOS AHHHHHH).
This isn't just a love letter to the Biebs, though. The person we should really be most in awe of right now is Parris Goebel, the genius 24-year-old choreographer who directed the whole thing. In addition to choreographing many of the tracks herself, Goebel pulled in an unbelievable number of dance stars to perform in and create for the various videos. There's a spirit of generosity to the project—she not only wants to show what she can do, but also what the people she admires can do.
Nobody disappoints. And much as we loved the cotton-candy happiness of "Sorry," "Purpose: The Movement" isn't all unicorns and rainbows. Several of the videos are genuinely dark—and genuinely moving.
November cover stars Keone and Mari Madrid create a gently heartbreaking portrait of one-sided love in "Love Yourself":
A fantastic cast of dancers, including our friend Janelle Ginestra, depict a searingly tragic love triangle in "The Feeling":
And that's not even the half of it. ("Sorry" fans, for example, will be happy to know that the lovely ladies of ReQuest and The Royal Family make appearances in several videos.) Check out the full dance movie here.
Also, THANK YOU, Bieber and Goebel, for crediting every single one of the choreographers and dancers featured in the videos. Note to the music industry: Let's make that a habit.
Eastwood draws people in with his inventive style, but he keeps them coming back with solid work ethic and passion for dance. So it's no surprise that his first major brand deal is with Ray-Ban, maker of those uber-cool sunglasses that have been worn by everyone from Marilyn Monroe to Michael Jackson. Classic elegance, combined with edgy modernity and longevity? Sounds like the way Eastwood might describe his own career.
(Photo by Alexandra Gavillet for Ray-Ban)
His interview with Ray-Ban is super-inspiring. A few nuggets: He loves to teach and takes it very seriously, and he quit the industry scene right when he was getting started because he believed in and wanted to focus on his own choreography.
Check out the video below:
High Strung is almost here, guys! The eagerly-anticipated dance film—starring, as you know by now, brilliant people like Keenan Kampa and Ian Eastwood—will hit theaters next Friday, April 8. That's right: In just one week, you and your studio besties will be able to see for yourselves just how dancetastic, and just how fun, this delightful romp of a movie is.
But there's even better news: You actually don't have to wait until next Friday for a taste of High Strung's delicious goodness. Because we have an exclusive clip of one of the film's loveliest dance scenes RIGHT NOW. Featuring Kampa—aka Ruby, in the High Strung world—at her ballerina best in a sun-soaked studio, it's a minute and fourteen seconds of classical heaven:
You're ready to buy your tickets now, right? We thought so. Click here to find a theater near you. And be sure to stay up to date on all things High Strung by following the film on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Photo by Erin Baiano
(Inspired by this.)
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, your hair game would instantly improve by about 100 points. So would your hat game.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, he'd occasionally come into rehearsals with notes on the choreo...from Justin Bieber.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, you'd already have blocked off the entire month of April for High Strung premiere parties. He'd have let you know the dates weeks in advance, because he's conscientious about "respecting your time."
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, he'd occasionally hide custom old-school mixtapes in your dance bag, complete with little handwritten notes. You don't have a tape player, but you'd cherish them anyway.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, he'd have an adorable new nickname for you by the end of each rehearsal. On the anniversary of your partnership, he'd present you with a sweatshirt on which he'd artfully graffiti-ed all of them—even the ones you'd long since forgotten.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, you'd suddenly find that jumpsuits looked amazing on you. Like, literally every jumpsuit, even the ones that no human body should realistically inhabit.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, he'd end rehearsals by taking out his digital Leica and shooting casually incredible black-and-white photographs of you freestyling. He'd only post the ones where you looked REALLY pretty to Insta. No filter.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, he wouldn't tolerate self-negging. He'd force you to stare at yourself in the mirror before every performance and repeat: "I am a goddess. I am a goddess. I AM A GODDESS." And with his support, you'd be able to do it. Un-ironically.
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, you'd expect to meet him at the indie coffee shop downtown to talk through choreo ideas. But he'd propose Dunkin Donuts. Because he's chill like that. (And he knows you like their coffee better, anyway.)
If Ian Eastwood were your dance partner, you'd find yourself sitting between Tricia Miranda and Dave Scott at The PULSE gala. For his sake, you'd keep yourself from hyperventilating until the subway ride home afterward.
Photo by Erin Baiano
Back in our July/August issue, we introduced you to the fantastic stars of the dancetastic film High Strung—or, rather, re-introduced you, since you knew Keenan Kampa and Ian Eastwood pretty darn well already.
They're so pretty. (photo by Erin Baiano)
Now the film—which follows the artistically-charged lives of a brilliant violinist, a gorgeous classical dancer (that'd be Kampa) and an innovative hip-hop crew (including Eastwood and Comfort Fedoke)—finally has a premiere date. Next Saturday, February 6, High Strung will make its official debut at the prestigious Santa Barbara International Film Festival. And in happy news for non-Californians, it's also slated for wider release in April. Which means there's a solid chance its dance-y goodness is coming to a theater near you very, very soon.
We've seen a screening of the film already, so you can trust us when we say it's a) kind of a delightful mash-up of Center Stage and Step Up, and b) the best thing to hit the dance movie scene since...well, Center Stage and Step Up. Click here for SBIFF tickets, and here for updates on High Strung's wider release.
Zendaya surrounded by waltzing dancers. (screenshot via Vimeo)
The video takes place on a glam theater stage and features choreography by Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Ian Eastwood, who both also make dance appearances. There are some great duet moments (Zendaya herself gets swept away in a waltz with Chmerkovskiy), some gorgeous group-dance sequences AND a slower hip-hop segment.
The hip-hop sequence (screenshot via Vimeo)
The video also adds an enchanting Peter Pan-esque plot with a mysterious Hook character played by Tony Award-winner Bryan Cranston (one of the producers of Finding Neverland), who lets Zendaya in on a little industry advice.
Watch below and prepare to be #obsessed.