Urban Gateways’ contribution to the Harlem Shake craze…

Video first, explanation later. Featuring the students of Oak Terrace Elementary in Highwood:

You might be wondering why an Urban Gateways program featured the Harlem Shake. Our Performance Programs Manager, Tarah Ortiz Durnbaugh, did a one-day dance workshop with these students: “The workshop was based in ‘The History of Hip Hop.’ We talked about and learned the dances that started in NYC and the West Coast in the 70s (breaking, poppin, locking, and the robot); fad dances of the 80s and 90s (running man, cabbage patch); and dances of today (shuffling, the jerk, tutting). We also focused on how people have learned dances and music over the years, from social dances (Hokey Pokey, Cha Cha Slide), dances from music videos (moonwalk, Hammer dance), and how new dances are learned today on the internet (The Jerk, Gangnam Style). That led to the most recent ‘dance’ craze, in Harlem Shake videos. Instead of learning choreography with this one, it is about learning the format and freestyle dancing to express yourself in your own way. That’s how we ended our day!” Thanks Tarah! And thanks, Oak Terrace students, for this gem of a video!