The term “pop dance” comes from a genre of music that is easy to dance to, but a bit of an oxymoron. It originally came about in the 1960s and was based on the technique of rapidly contracting and relaxing muscles. The movements are performed while hitting the floor to the beat of the song. In addition to its unique style, popping is used as an umbrella term for a variety of illusionary dance styles that often integrate it with other dance styles. Pop dancers are often called “poppers” and the style is sometimes confused with locking and breaking.
The Electric Boogaloo Lockers, a group of Chicago-based dancers, invented the Popping dance in 1976. These performers performed at local talent shows and soon gained popularity. Their performances were featured in Hollywood films such as Breakin’ and Beat Street. The group’s appearance on music variety show Solid Gold was also a catalyst for the movement’s national breakthrough. The Popping dance was even used by Michael Jackson when he performed his “Moonwalk” song on national television.
The video for “The Father of Pop Dance” reproduces images of the dancer’s father performing in a dark room. The dancers wear wildly patterned outfits and are confident and earnest in their dance moves. Some of these images appear as double-exposures, but the film’s style could be considered stop-motion animation. The white splotches are probably due to the pages of the photo album in which they were taken.