David Mancuso, pioneering DJ and underground dance club icon, RIP

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David Manucso, the pioneering New York City DJ who launched the underground dance music scene with his in 1970 club The Loft, has died. He was 72. Mancuso's exquisite taste in music and his mission to host inclusive parties safe for GLBTQ people and other marginalized communities made him a beloved icon of club culture. From The Guardian:

Unlike the commercial clubs that existed to make a profit, Mancuso and particularly his event Love Saves the Day, offered a space for its members, often an LGBTQ audience, to celebrate nightlife without police interference.

“For me, the core [idea behind The Loft] is social progress,” he said in 2013. “How much social progress can there be when you’re in a situation that is repressive? You won’t get much social progress in a nightclub. In New York City they changed the law [for entry into clubs, from] 18 to 21 years old; where can this age group go to dance? In my zone, you can be any age, a drinker or non-drinker, a smoker or a non-smoker. And that’s where I like to be.”

Playlist: David Mancuso presents The Loft:

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Watch this crazy contortionist's dance

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The latest from Shakirudeen Adewale Alade, aka Bonetics, who first twisted our melons on Britain's Got Talent in 2015. (via Laughing Squid)

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Dancers in the house

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This week on HOME: Stories From L.A.

A roving. shifting company of dance and performance artists is nudging its audiences to think about home differently -- by bringing one-off, site-specific performances to houses, live-work spaces and tiny apartments all over the Los Angeles area. Meet homeLA.

HOME is a member of the Boing Boing Podcast Network. If you like what you hear, please rate/review the show on iTunes. NEW: Subscribe to the newsletter.

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Mocap is magic

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This 2:47 showreel from Method Studios was produced for the Association of Independent Commercial Producers Awards, as an exuberant celebration of the many possibilities of motion-capture: simply combine talented dancers, pingpong balls, and computer graphics artists, shake and strain, and voila, the impossible is real. (via Kottke) Read the rest

Digital Dance (1982) was a trippy computer-animated blot of pixels

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Ed Tannenbaum animated Digital Dance in 1982. The post-disco music is by Might Dog (anyone know anything about it?), the dancer is Pons Maar, and Jim Wiseman shot the footage. Once again, I'm struck by how much glitch aesthetics are about creating memories, not deconstructing technology. Read the rest

San Francisco: Premiere of beautiful new contemporary dance from ODC

On Thursday (3/17), the pioneering artists from San Francisco's contemporary dance company ODC will launch their 2016 season with a stunning array of world premiere pieces at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts! See video teasers above and below. Tickets available here. I've seen many ODC performances over the years and the commonality between them is that they are all sublime. This Thursday is the first ever performance of ODC founder/artist director Brenda Way's "Walk Back the Cat," featuring an original score commissioned and performed by Paul Dresher, with visuals by RJ Muna and Ian Winters.

"'Walk Back the Cat,' a metaphor for retracing the complex backstory of an event, explores the skeleton of the creative process," Way says. "How does context affect meaning in dance? Developing from pure movement ideas into a dramatic scenario, the work is conceived as a kind of choreographic puzzle, which ultimately comes together in a scenario inspired by Thomas Hart Benton’s muscular and vital murals of American City Life in the 1930s."

The other pieces in the 2016 season include:

* KT Nelson’s new work, "Going Solo," for the exceptional Private Freeman

* Reprise of Nelson’s explosive 2015 hit, "Dead Reckoning"

* Kimi Okada’s "humorous I look vacantly at the Pacific…though regret"

* An unprecedented co-commission from NY choreographer Kate Weare who brings her fiery movement to the ODC dancers with the world premiere of "Giant"

ODC/Dance Downtown (March 17-27)

"Dead Reckoning":

"I look vacantly at the Pacific... though regret":

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Happy Mutants Guide to Understanding Football

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Football is about one thing and one thing only: dance. As far as I can tell American rules football is where men in elaborate costumes, featuring tight pants, seek to stop other men from dancing.

Colloquially known as a touchdown celebration, the body of rules and regulations managed by the credible governing body, the National Football League, seems to focus on allowable practices to bar the opposing team from dancing. After they've determined what you can do to stop a dancer, and what things are permissible to get the dancer on to the dance floor, known as an "end zone," the NFL then heavily regulates what type of dancing is appropriate.

We have seen Footloose, sad things happen when you try to stop people from dancing. In the NFL this frustration frequently seems to present as abuse and other ugly, unacceptable social behaviors.

I do like the commercials.

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Uptown Funk as a mashup of 66 classic movie dance routines

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Bruno Mars's ubiquitous, kicky song-of-the summer is even better when it's interpreted through 66 classic cinematic dance numbers. Watch it now, before it is crushed in the remorseless maw of some joyless Vichy nerd’s copyright bot. (via Metafilter) Read the rest

WATCH: These gymnastic Japanese breakdancers will leave you breathless

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World of Dance just held their World Finals in Los Angeles, and the breakout team in the Youth competition brought insane levels of energy and breakdancing precision to win their division. Read the rest

Influential post-punk dance albums by Liquid Liquid reissued on vinyl!

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In 1983, Downtown NYC post-punk dance band Liquid Liquid released this Michael Sporn Animation Studios video for "Cavern," a killer track whose bassline became the foundation of Grandmaster Melle Mel's pioneering hip hop track "White Lines (Don't Do It)." The excellent Superior Viaduct label has just reissued Liquid Liquid's classic records including Optimo, the EP containing "Cavern." Read the rest

Physiology of "Bone Breaking" street dancing

My friends at Youth Radio interviewed a sports medicine physician, who used to dance with Cirque du Soleil, about the anatomy of "bone breaking," the incredible form of turf dancing where the performers rhythmically contort, pop, and flex their bodies in crazy ways.

Below, Youth Radio's earlier video about turf dancing.

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Baby twins perform Irish dance

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Who can resist babies that bOING! bOING!?

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WATCH: Choreographed LED hula hooping

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Viennese artists Annika Hakala and Lisa Looping of HoopioSis perform mesmerizing choreography using LED hula hoops. Be sure to watch in HD. Read the rest

WATCH: friends enter The Matrix via their 140-camera array

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The Pixelist presents The Timefreezers, a fun little montage of some friends messing around with their camera array onstage during downtime in their filming schedule of UK series Got To Dance. How'd they do it? Read the rest

WATCH: Zaouli dance from Ivory Coast

"According to most people who show interest in cultures and especially in the culture of Gouro ethnic group, Zaouli, a popular mask dance, was created in the fifties. The Gouro ethnic group is the midwestern part of Ivory Coast / Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa. According to what people say, there are diverse legends regarding the origin of the Zaouli mask and dance; yet, all come to the agreement that such legends were inspired by a very beautiful girl - 'Dzela Lou Zaouli' - daughter of Zaouli." -- Gouro Culture Read the rest

WATCH: New OK Go video has drones, scooters, human pixels, and a catchy tune

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OK Go returns with another hypnotic, tightly-choreographed video for I Won't Let You Down, from their new album Hungry Ghosts. Read the rest

Cirque du Soleil's dance of drones

Cirque du Soleil, ETH Zurich, and Verity Studios choreographed a dance of drones and people titled Sparked. Below is a behind-the-scenes video.

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