We live in a sea of air. It holds us, weighs on us, keeps us tethered. The earth, of course, holds us too, keeps us pinned. But not all of us. I want you to meet Storyboard P, a dancer who floats.
In this dance, he’s in a British hotel, in a corridor — basically a tight, long, low narrow box. Just watch his feet or (later) his knees. They’re on the carpet, but barely. If I were the nylon or the polypropylene in that carpet, would I feel him sliding over me? I guess so, but I’m not totally sure. He can play with weight. He can make it come and you feel him settling, he can make it go, and you feel him almost lifting off. This man has bird in him; watch him flutter, just a little, at the end.
Storyboard P is in his mid-20s; he’s from Brooklyn; his dances are mostly improvised — composed of small, tight, quiet gestures that recall, here and there, Michael Jackson (and all manner of street dancing, plus wisps of Fred Astaire, Savion Glover and the Nicholas Brothers). Jonah Weiner at The New Yorker did a short profile of him and the “flex” dance culture that spawned him, which you can find here. This dance (shortened from the original) was performed in 2012 in a London hotel. The song, “Flight,” was sung and composed by the Bristol-based songwriter Toyface.