What has 20,000 arms and legs and turns Broadway into a dance floor?
On Saturday, May 21, you can shimmy-shimmy shake (or at least watch about 10,000 parade participants doing so) when the 5th Annual New York City Dance Parade kicks off with nearly 80 dance styles, from ballet to Bulgarian, Capoeira to Contra, bellydance to ballroom dance, zydeco to zouk. Don’t worry, 1980s roller disco holdouts: They’ve got you covered too.
The parade starts at 1PM (plan to be along the parade route by about noon) at 21st Street; dancers will salsa, tap, twirl and crunk down Broadway, and then swing (literally) East onto Saint Marks. The whole shindig culminates in a massive afternoon-long dance party -- complete with 25 live performances and free lessons in specific dance styles -- in Tompkins Square Park.
In a city whose dancing mojo remains muted by often inscrutable and mystifying cabaret laws, the Dance Parade has a simple mission: to “promote dance as an expressive and unifying art form by showcasing all forms of dance.”
All we know is that--flash mobs aside--it's the only time NYC transforms itself into that scene from Famewhere Irene Cara cripples traffic as West 46th Street fills with dancers, which we pretty much thought happened here all the time when we were growing up.
Get all the information on the 5th Annual New York City Dance Parade at http://www.danceparade.org, where you can also sign up to shake it with one of the dozens of groups participating on May 21. And check out the trailer below.