Pop dance is a genre of upbeat dance music that merges club rhythms with distinctive pop song structures. It prioritizes a simplistic form with prescribed beats, infectious vocals and bright effects. It is often seen in contemporary R&B, dance-pop and pop rock music. During the 1980s, dance-pop became associated with other accelerated electronic genres such as Hi-NRG. Notable producers during this era included Stock, Aitken and Waterman who created hits for artists like Kylie Minogue, Dead or Alive and Bananarama. Dance-pop also drew influences from other popular styles including funk, new jack swing and contemporary R&B.
Whether popping is considered the secular reverberation of a sanctified echo, a residue of weed-fueled teenage spasms or a legacy of sweat saturated cultural exchange, it is undeniable that the style has become a worldwide phenomenon. Moreover, the popularity of this dance is tied to its ability to transcend the spectator’s everyday life through the kinesthetic sensations it evokes in their muscles, joints and tendons.
Dr. Chuyun Oh is an associate professor of Dance at San Diego State University and will be presenting her research on K-Pop Dance at the Sybil B. Harrington College of Fine Arts Complex Recital Hall on March 9. Her academic research focuses on performance ethnography and activism, where she investigates how the artistic bases of dance allow for freedom of expression for individuals and communities. She is particularly interested in ways in which racial and gender identities intersect with dance through creative thought.