Dance fever, Waacking at the Angel
At the top of the City Road just before it meets the Angel is a miserable bar, almost empty at ten o’clock last Friday – apart from the dregs of office workers. But then something miraculous happened, a crew of energetic young street dancers bounced into the bar in twos and threes and began greeting each other with high fives and generous embraces.
As if on cue, the music changed and the dancers began delerious athletic moves, grabbing the attention of the tired office workers and holding them rapt. Suddenly, the dance floor was filled with a joyous spontaneous dance spectacle displaying such talent, delight and accomplishment that all the office workers were clapping and whooping and cheering, in spite of themselves. Outside, passerbys gathered in a crowd gawking through the windows. It truly was just like a scene in a movie, only better because this was real.
Let me admit I was tipped off, these dancers had been inspired in their heroic endeavours by Kumari Suraj of the Imperial House of Waacking from Los Angeles who is currently teaching in London. Princess Kumari herself is a pupil of the legendary Tyrone Proctor, one the originators of Waacking -which originated in gay clubs in Los Angeles and which you may know (in a very diluted form) from Madonna’s Vogueing. Waacking is evolved from the movements of models whilst being photographed. In the dance these gestures take on a vigorous, frenetic, rhythmic life, propelling the dancer around the floor at breathtaking speed.
I was so happy to be there on Friday because I am entirely in awe of these dancers – if you can dance as brilliantly as that, as far as I am concerned, you need do nothing else.