Arts + Culture
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The 17 Best Viral Dance Videos of 2017

OkayAfrica gives you the best viral African dance videos of 2017 that you'll be sure to dance along with.

Year after year, we continue to get lost in visual creativity brought to you by talented folks utilizing social media platforms to share their joy of dance.

Dance videos are how we get put on to music we may have missed (because let's admit that it an be a bit much to try to keep up), as well as establish what kind of moves you'll be breaking out in the club (no shame, I'm that person). And because it's the internet, of course there's the cross-cultural exchange we all love. This year we saw dance challenges on dance challenges, and kiddies taking over—we're here for it.

Below you'll find our favorite viral dance vids of 2017 and why.


1. Because the One Corner Dance turned Ghana's conservatism on its head.

At first glance, it didn't make any sense why the dance and song caught. In a relatively conservative Ghanaian society, in fact, the gestures of the dance could be seen to violate an unspoken rule about movement in public space. Yet people of all ages, across the country do it. That even the military and police who are the embodiment of restraint and rigidity, enforcers of the strictures of society couldn't resist the tune means it had the most important—if not revered—quality of any music: like the force in newtons first law, it puts bodies in motion.

-Anakwa Dwamena

3. Because these moves epitomize the energy in Babes Wodumo's "Wololo."

13. Because this MJ tribute is everything.

14. Because we cannot.

Interview

Angelique Kidjo Writes a Love Letter to 'Mother Nature'

We talk to the Beninese musical icon about assembling her new album on Zoom and the "bigger than COVID-19" threat that lies ahead!

The kind of infectious energy that lives within Angelique Kidjo can't be contained by Zoom. Her zest for life reaches out far beyond any screen, and burns stronger than the fastest internet connection.

"I can't wait until we're in person hugging again," she enthuses soon after joining our Zoom meeting to discuss her latest album Mother Nature. Having been on the receiving end of a hug from the four-time Grammy-winning singer, I know exactly what I'm missing out on. "Me too," I say, as I wrap my arms around my laptop, my face squishing the screen. "No, no," she retorts. "I don't want that. You keep it. I want the real deal," she chuckles, her full-bodied trademark laughter lovingly admonishing me.

The Benin-born musician is preparing to release Mother Nature, a collection of songs reflecting our one Earth, and cementing her status as an African musical icon. Collaborating with the likes of Yemi Alade, Mr Eazi, Burna Boy, Sampa the Great, Shungudzo and more, Kidjo's crossing through time and space, over age and country through Mother Nature's themes and stories. Each track is infused with a vigor that only she possesses — the kind that shares a significant message even as the listener is called to just dance or sing along.

Below, Angelique Kidjo reminisces about making the album, and chats us through her hopes and dreams for it!

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