Monday, June 16, 2008

It's getting easier to become an international star these days, particularly if you are awesomely entertaining.

The Chooky Dancers, from a small island off Arnhem Land, show just how far one great dance routine posted on YouTube can take you. The clip, posted by the lead dancer's dad, is rocketing towards one million views and has already seen the dance group score gigs on TV and offers to take their dance moves on tour across the world.

From the Melbourne Age :

The lead dancer, Lionel Djirrimbilpilwuy, came up with the idea of fusing Yolngu dance with modern music.

"I just dance the way I like," he said. "It's my own style."

"It will be the first time travelling overseas for the boys," said Djirrimbilpilwuy's mother, Margaret, who filmed the famous video.

The Chooky Dancers' repertoire also includes more traditional dances with clapping sticks, and a Bollywood-style number.

Djirrimbilpilwuy, who is responsible for most of the choreography, hopes they will been seen as role models in their community.

"When he hears the music, it just hits his heart and he has to dance," his mother said.

And what dancing. Some Zorba The Greek, a snap of tap, a slicing parody of the traditional drunk white Australian male RSL dance, and what looks like a mash-up of moves from Michael Jackson's Thriller, Peter Garret's jerky spasmodics, and Travolta's Greased Lighting routine from the movie Grease. Awesome.