Even if you've never been to L.A., you probably have a solid idea of what class at Millennium Dance Complex in North Hollywood is like. You can picture the vibrant red walls; you can feel the waves of dancers feeding off one another's explosive energy. Why? Because you—and millions of other dance fans—have watched countless class videos filmed at the center.
Class videos are a VIP pass, taking dancers and non-dancers alike inside the commercial world's hottest studios. And people are watching them obsessively, sharing them on platforms across the web, helping them rack up tens of millions of views. We turned to some of the industry's key players to find out more about what makes the class video format uniquely appealing.
How crazy has the rise of the class video been? Within the past year or so, we've basically come to expect that L.A.'s top commercial choreographers will put out a new internet-breaking vid every week. Here are five of our all-time favorites. (And be sure to read a whole lot more about the class video trend in the May/June issue of Dance Spirit.)
Oh, you knew it was coming.
As soon as Beyoncé dropped the internet-breaking "Formation" video—complete with epic choreo by Dana Foglia, JaQuel Knight and Chris Grant—you could practically hear choreographers around the world dropping everything to work on "Formation" routines of their own.
But you probably weren't expecting those routines to be QUITE as good as WilldaBeast's "Formation" creation.
Then again, do we expect anything less than perfection from WilldaBeast these days? Because that's exactly what his spin on the instant Bey classic delivers: take-no-prisoners, make-no-excuses perfection.
The video (filmed by Tim Milgram, naturally) even features one of Beyoncé's own Super Bowl ladies, the fabulous China Taylor. (Her lip-syncing skills actually give me chills.) And as always, we get to see the stylings of a whole crowd of WilldaBeast devotees, including Jade Chynoweth, Sean Lew, Will Simmons and (does she sleep??) Kaycee Rice.
Watch them slay. (They slay.) All day. (ALL DAY.)
OK, I know it's a little bit early for this, but I'm gonna go ahead and tell you guys my New Year's resolution: In 2015, I resolve to be half...no, a third as cool as the girls of Will "WilldaBeast" Adams' LilBeasts.
You know we've been all about the LilBeasts for a while now. So many of the hip-hop minis catching our eyes these days turn out to be WilldaBeast disciples. (Exhibit A: Taylor Hatala.) He sure has a gift for finding and cultivating swag in its earliest of stages.
So why the sudden, new-found need to declare my love and admiration for the lady LilBeasts, in particular? A couple weeks ago, WilldaBeast posted a new video to Ciara's "That's Right," featuring Sydney Rosefsky, Jordyn Jones, Tati McQuay, Kyndall Harris, Kaycee Rice and Lexee Smith. Um...it's amazing.
Got to go start practicing. 2015 is just around the corner!