ONE THOUSAND ONE.
Image: Willi Ninja Paris is Burning
The actual origins of Vogue are still disputed today. Generally accepted in the ballroom realm is that it is derivative of shade. Instead of grieving it out physically towards the other, the one with the sharpest moves and cleanest lines won the battle. The Harlem ballroom scene flourished throughout the 60’s and 70’s, but incarcerated queens on Rikers Island simultaneously used this style of dance to attract the attention of like-mannered inmates and to recreate their own balls. Regardless which came first, Vogue is the triumph of many underrepresented communities; the chance for poor, queer black and Latino bodies to ravish in a simple and deserved moment of glamour.
The ballroom scene has progressed immensely throughout the decades. Houses have grown to international acclaim and categories span widely between Soft n’ Cunt to Femme Dramatics. Although this style of dance is continuously being surfaced to the mainstream and attracting all walks of life, the term legendary remains a fixed one. Below are some of our very favorite legendary children and some shining stars in today’s scene. We hope you cordially accept the invitation to our house and try your new moves to our attached June playlist. Hope you’ve had a happy pride month.
Known for his ever-embellished movements that draw inspiration from contemporary dance, Alex has the future of Vogue in his hands. The compact dancer catches every dip with precise control. He injects an extra layer of entertainment quality with the camp and play of many of his movements.
The reigning father. The one and only. The very dramatic Javier Ninja's trademark is his hands—the very angular and super mesmerizing display of every motion possible of the arms. Apart from his use of some very sacred geometry, this talented dancer also bridges elements of femme into his New way style. The ancient Egyptians truly ain’t got shit on him.
This fireball of energy is no game to play with. Not afraid of body contact or throwing himself off tabletops and heights, Justin is fully stocked with an arsenal of surprises. This maven of the Femme Dramatics category is a weapon of mass destruction, highly capable of the spin-dip followed by another in the very next count.
Of unequivocal glamour and style, Tati is a unique case after her departure from the legendary house of Mugler. Despite this, her charm and sensuality evoked in each of her moves and gestures are a trademark of her own independent brand of feminine, feminine cunt.
This superstar from the Finnish chapter of the House of Ninja also partakes in pole-dancing. This second skill lends well into the core-heavy agility needed to shine in New Way. With flexibility and balance that is unmatched, this rising name is definitely one to look out for.
This wonder woman cannot catwalk the floor without the command of every eye around. The legendary Leiomy has graced us on numerous platforms (remember her on America’s Best Dance Crew?) and we are still thoroughly invested in every spin and every whip of the neck she will continue to dazzle us with. If you haven’t heard of her yet, then I strongly suggest you do your homework. Skip to 2:35 for the dramatics.