“F” is for finger tutting—at least according to Diesel’s commercial, “A–Z of Dance,” which went viral in 2014. The style was also featured in Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” video—and both finger feats were performed by Finger Circus crew member John “P-Nut” Hunt.
While the mainstream may have only recently tapped into the world of finger tutting, it isn’t new. According to fellow Finger Circus crew member Chase “C-Tut” Lindsey, the style developed during the NYC rave scene in the late 1990s. Finger tutting was also influenced by regular tutting, a style that uses the hands to imitate people in ancient Egyptian art.
Today, Finger Circus is taking finger tutting to the next level, using performances, workshops and online tutorials to spread the word. Want to get in on the fun? DS broke down the steps to P-Nut’s beginner sequence—the same series he taught Taylor Swift—below.
P-Nut says: "This sequence isn't meant to go super fast, so it's okay to take your time with each step."
All photos by Nathan Sayers.
Make “L” shapes with both hands, using your thumbs and pointer fingers. Touch your two thumbs together so your fingers form the shape of a field goal.
Slide your right thumb across the top of your left thumb until your two thumbs overlap completely.
Slide your right thumb up the inside of your left pointer finger until the fingertip of your right thumb touches the fingertip of your left pointer finger.
Maintaining the connection between your left pointer finger and your right thumb, rotate your right pointer finger 180 degrees until it reaches your left thumb, forming a rectangle.
Collapse the rectangle by bending both thumbs and keeping both pointer fingers straight. You should end up with your left pointer finger lying on top of your right pointer finger.
Flip the collapsed rectangle shape so it’s horizontal, with your left pointer finger still on top.
Slide your pointer fingertips toward one another, keeping your thumbs attached to them. Once you reach the point where all four fingertips are touching, rotate your right wrist toward you so your right pointer finger is above your right thumb. (Your right hand should now mirror your left.)
Lift your pointer fingers away from your thumbs to form a heart shape.
Complete the heart by joining the rest of your fingers with your pointer fingers.
(Photo by Status Silver, courtesy Finger Circus)
John “P-Nut” Hunt is a California-based hip-hopper, undefeated finger-tutter and member of Finger Circus crew. His big break came in 2013 when, while eating at a pizza joint in Fremont, CA, he filmed a video entitled “Greasy Fingers.” The Internet exploded over the unbelievably intricate and fluid patterns he constructed with just his hands—and fans dubbed him King of Fingers.
Gabriel Figueredo in a variation from Raymonda. VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP.
This week, over 1,000 young hopefuls gathered in New York City for the Youth America Grand Prix finals, giving them the chance to compete for scholarships and contracts to some of the world's top ballet schools and companies. Roughly 85 dancers made it to the final round at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater on Wednesday. Today, the 20th anniversary of YAGP came to a close at the competition's awards ceremony. Read on to find out who won!
After a string of ballet-company rejections, Jennifer Sydor (here in Laura Peterson's "Failure") found success in other areas of the dance world. (Stephen Delas Heras, courtesy Jennifer Sydor)
In her senior year at Butler University, Jennifer Sydor auditioned for more than a dozen regional ballet companies—and got a string of "no, thank you" responses. "I have an athletic build, and my movement quality isn't the typical ballet aesthetic," Sydor says. "But I'd been laser-focused on ballet. When I didn't get a ballet contract, I was heartbroken."
Her one job offer came from Kim Robards Dance, a small modern company based in Aurora, CO. After attending KRD's summer intensive, Sydor ended up accepting a yearlong position with the troupe. "I was relieved and happy to begin my career," she says. She's been working as a contemporary dancer ever since.
In the dance world, rejection is part of the package. That doesn't make it any more pleasant. But whether you didn't get the Nutcracker role of your dreams or you weren't picked for a job despite feeling like you aced the audition, you can emerge from even the most gut-wrenching "no" smarter and stronger.
Ballet West principal Beckanne Sisk as Kitri (Luke Isley, courtesy Ballet West)
Guess who's baaaaack?! Your resident Dance Spirit astrologers! And on the eve of the Youth America Grand Prix awards ceremony, we thought it was the perfect time to pair each zodiac sign with a variation commonly seen during the competition. After many painstaking hours spent researching, consulting the stars, and staring wistfully into the sky, we compiled our data and present you with the definitive list of each star sign as a YAGP variation! As we said last time, don't @ us if you're not happy with your pairing—the stars don't lie, baby!