In a year that has been especially tough on the dance world, TikTok has been a welcome distraction. The app, in all its dance-y, super-woke, and, often, delightfully cringe-y (ahem, #DixieDAmelioOneWholeDay) glory, gave us the content we needed: An escape from the ballooning insanity we're still trudging through today. (We're almost there, folx!)
To celebrate the bounty of good feels and good moves the app gifted us this year (and, frankly, to celebrate the end 👏 of 👏 this 👏 year 👏), here are 20 of our favorite dance TikToks from 2020.
new dance? i should be doing my mid-term paper rn 😂😂 but try it and tag me♬ HOOPLA - KyleYouMadeThat
The #HOOPLA dance, with choreography by @karaleighcannella, consists of all the TikTok choreo staples: hitting the woah (multiple times!), the overemphasized clap towards the camera, and the groovy hip rocks. It also reminds us of High School Musical's "Get'cha Head in the Game," and #tbh, anything HSM-relevant—oh, the nostalgia!—is a 10/10 for us.
Here Comes Santa Clause
THREE😭 @mami.cyre DC: @laneyysgrig ##fyp♬ this is our dance give credit lol - kara
From the remixed version of a classic, to the super-simple choreography you can do with a friend, the #HereComesSantaClaus dance, created by @karawardddd, is the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. Fair warning: After one listen, you'll be humming this tune for the foreseeable future.
The Lyrical Dance Version of "W.A.P."
Leave it to dancers to transform one of the year's biggest pop culture moments into a lyrical dance. We're loving all the beautiful leg lines, passionate reaches, and expressive performances this dance, choreographed by @besperon, has inspired.
##Stillsingingintheshower 🙃 I had to. DC: @zacklugo @notstoud_ @brandonmundine♬ Shower - Becky G
Becky G's "Shower" is a bop that can put a smile on anybody's face. Add to it @zacklugo, @notstoud_, and @brandonmundine's easy-breezy choreography, and you have the perfect remedy for even the worst of your pandemic blues.
The "Body" dance videos popping up all over TikTok feature the original choreography (by the legendary JaQuel Knight) from rapper Megan Thee Stallion's music video and live performances, so if you're dreaming of being one of her back-up dancers—because, uh, who isn't?!—hitting these steps on the app might just be your chance! Also, please enjoy this video of the Grinch doing the "Body" dance. You're welcome.
The #DancerCheck challenge gives dancers the opportunity to show off their favorite—and least favorite—dance tricks. And since every dancer has unique strengths, the interpretations of the challenge vary, which makes watching these dance vids all the more interesting.
Shake Ya Boom Boom
Shake ya boom boom💥💥 That song😍(dc: @thewilliamsfam_ ) @staticandbenel @blackeyedpeas♬ Shake Ya Boom Boom - Static & Ben El & Black Eyed Peas
As the title suggests, this song—and dance—is all about shaking what you've got. But the choreography for it, by @thewilliamsfam_, is so much more. Wild and upbeat, the #ShakeYaBoomBoom dance might possibly be the most hype one on the app, and we're so here for the energy!
👻 (dc @kamronagee ) ##fyp♬ VMESHBEATS ADDERALL X BOO X IG FREESTYLE - Varoon Ramesh
Ever used TikTok's "Out of Body" filter? No? Well, the appropriately-named #Ghost dance, created by @kamronagee, is the perfect opportunity to try it out. The spooky effect, which allows users to pause their body in a position, then move outside that frame in a ghostly effect, makes this dance even more fun to film and edit.
Don't Start Now
The #DontStartNow dance was mega-popular on the app this year. Perhaps it was the choreography (done by TikTok dance star @thexhan) that's equally apt for beginner and advanced dancers. Maybe it's the sunny vibes the music gives off. But we, like the rest of the world, can't stop doing this dance!
The #ClockChallenge is really just a creative way for users to show off their flexibility. Some dancers do it standing; others opt to execute it from a handstand position—but always are the feats accomplished in these videos super impressive.
Created by @mehki, the #Cake dance serves up movement that perfectly matches the song's thumping percussion, which makes dancing it—and watching others dance it—all the more fun.
OK, so maybe the #SaySo dance debuted on the app in 2019, but it really made a mark in 2020. The dance represents how much TikTok was part of the cultural zeitgeist this year, with parts of the choreography, by @yodeinghaley, making it into singer/rapper Doja Cat's epic 2020 MTV Video Music Awards performance.
Choreographed by one of our faves, @dexrated, the "Levitating" dance is a sassy mix of daring hip isolations and expansive arm movements. Like the song, the choreography exudes a super-chill vibe, and we can't get enough of the combination.
What You Know 'Bout Love
TikTok is full of upbeat dance vids, but the #WhatYouKnowBoutLove dance slows that pace down a bit. It features the laid back, in-the-pocket grooves of @willdevane, filled to the brim with swag and ultra-cool style.
TikTok + disco music = the #FunkyTown dance! It mimics parts of the "Macarena" dance from the late 90s, and is really all about, well, getting *funky* with your moves and grooves.
In March, just as the pandemic forced states into lockdown, TikTok queen @keke.janajah debuted her choreography to the song of the year, "Savage." The song's success was, in great part, due to the popularity of Keke's dance on the app—and we're still dancing it to this day.
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!
What would the TikTok dance community be without a little jazz dancing? Enter: the #GimmeGimmeGimme dance, choreographed by @melissabecraft. It's everything we love about traditional jazz: grounded pas de bourrées, high kicks, and so! much! energy!
Whole Lotta Choppa
@ohbukster♬ Whole Lotta Choppas - Sada Baby
Need some good fun in your life? Look no further than the #WholeLottaChoppa dance. It's short, sweet, and easy to learn—but the best part? The more personality you throw into it, the more fun you'll have.
Singer Ciara's "Get Up" has always been a jam, but this remixed version of the song on TikTok—souped-up, with accents galore—is a dancer's dream. And the insanely musical choreography by @jm_yrreverre is even better.
The Renegade (of course)
ayeeee🙈🔥♬ Lottery - K CAMP
No TikTok list would be complete without the "Renegade" dance, popularized in 2020 by Charli D'Amelio, but created months earlier by TikTok icon @jalaiahharmon. Users (and celebrities) all over the world were doing it. And the popularity of the dance spurred important questions about TikTok ethics: why weren't TikTokers getting credit for their moves, many of whom are Black? And whose responsibility was it to credit them? Fortunately, crediting TikTok creators has become less of an issue in recent months. And we have the "Renegade" dance (and Jalaiah) to thank for that.