In our lifetime, we have been privileged to see some incredible dance artists perfect their craft. While dance outlives us by thousands of years, the talent and influence of dancers in popular culture is unparalleled. Dancing will always be a means of self-expression, and since the inception of television and the internet, it’s easy to learn to move like your favorite artists. Howcast makes it easy to learn how to dance like the most famous dancers. Simply find your favorite artist, and watch our video guides to learn their style!
The King of Pop undoubtedly changed the face of dance during his career. Jackson’s Moonwalk is known across all cultures and is often demonstrated by people across the world. He is cemented as a full-on legend. He was a child when he first began performing in the Jackson 5, but he was born with the innate talent to dance. Jackson’s innovative dance style not only impacted the genre but also changed the way music videos were created in the 1980s, with “Thriller” as a prime example. He captivated audiences with his moves and music for decades and is one of the biggest icons to impact dance in popular culture ever.
Beyoncé Knowles is a bonafide megastar. Everyone seems to be a fan of hers. She has impacted music, dance, and fashion in ways that no other artist has. She is known to reinterpret styles of dance and blast them into popularity worldwide. The choreography to “Single Ladies,” “Crazy in Love,” and “Run the World,” have become Iconic. Knowles is influenced by hip-hop, jazz, and some ballet to create the signature style that has made her a superstar. Beyoncé has been a trendsetter since her time in Destiny’s Child in the early 90s, and there’s no sign of her slowing down anytime soon. Learn how to dance like this famous dancer in the Howcast Beyoncé dancing video series!
Since the age of 15, Usher has been captivating audiences around the world with his incredible singing and dance moves. Inspired by the King of Pop, Usher has been a perfectionist in his career. He is also notably one of the significant influences of the next generation of hip hop dancers. Usher’s intense choreography, dance style, and love of performing is an authentic experience for his fans. As an entertainer, he has a level of showmanship that many artists simply can’t measure up to. Influenced by soul, hip-hop, and jazz, he is easily one of the most famous dancers and has become a true master of his craft.
This Colombian songstress is known for her incredibly distinct voice and her sultry hip and belly dancing. It’s not common to see a mainstream artist emulate Shakira’s style. Shakira is influenced by her Latin roots, her Lebanese family history, and rock and roll. She has made an impact on dance because she has reinvented traditional belly dancing and transformed it into something special that only she can recreate. The combination of her sound, her moves, and her being makes her an incredibly influential artist. She is the highest-selling Colombian artist of all time.
Perhaps the most famous ballerina of all time, Anna Pavlova was a Russian ballerina in the late 1800s. Pavlova decided at the tender age of eight that she wanted to try her hand at Ballet. With her small frame and lacking the strength of a typical professional ballet dancer, she worked diligently on her expressive moves that would ultimately become her gift to the world of dance.
Pavlova was known for fully embracing every role she embarked on, moving her audience and evoking emotion. After creative differences with her management, she decided to create her own company and travel the world performing her craft. During her short 50 years, she changed the face of Ballet and will forever be known as the first superstar of Ballet.
Considered one of the greatest ballet dancers of the 20th century, everyone knows the name Mikhail Baryshnikov. His love for Ballet started at age nine in his native Soviet Union. Moving to Canada in 1974, he continued dancing and perfecting his craft. He is credited with popularizing the inclusion of men in Ballet during the 1970s and 1980s. He was incredibly precise in his technique and had on-stage charisma and charm that other artists lacked. He would later move into performing in films and theater. He continues to mentor and teach and is the Artistic Director of the Baryshnikov Arts Center.
Time Magazine named Martha Graham “Dancer of The Century,” and she has reached iconic status in the world of dance. Graham was a pioneer in modern dance, transforming traditional ballet into something new. While traditional ballerinas were meant to look effortless and weightless while performing a grueling style of dance, Graham revolutionized the form. Her techniques sought to portray pure emotion and struggle. Her choreography had deeper themes surrounding war and poverty as well. She created new jumps, spirals, and spins, and she became an international idol, adored by many.
Prabhu Deva is a highly acclaimed Indian dance choreographer whose work has been in many Indian films over his 25-year career. He is the recipient of two National Film Awards for Best Choreography and known as the King of Dance. To some, he is considered to be India’s Michael Jackson, and Jackson was one of his biggest influences growing up. He knew from childhood that dancing was his passion and that he was going to make a career out of it. He has mastered many styles of dance, and he knows how to give his audience exactly what they want. His work inspires fans of his from around the world, and they try to emulate his style.
Fred Astaire, along with his partner in crime Ginger Rogers, is best known for his musical comedy films and stage dance. He is considered one of the greatest pop music dancers of all time. Fred Astaire revolutionized dance with his immense talent. He was known for being light on his feet and making his performances look entirely effortless. It was well-known that he was a perfectionist, as he spent countless hours training and perfecting his craft. He always preferred working as a duo, starting with his sister when he was a child, and he later repeatedly worked with Ginger Rogers. Some of their projects are his most well-received.
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