When most people think of the art of dance as it relates to Vietnamese culture, they usually focus on the more traditional styles of dance -- your fan dances, your ribbon dances, your platter dances, your hat dances, your lion dances, etc. However, there's more to Vietnamese dance culture than meets the eye. Vietnamese society is changing and evolving everyday. By looking at modern dance trends, it becomes pretty obvious that Vietnam has become a global player (in both the consumption and production of goods and services).


Dance Covers

Korean pop music is well-known for the iconic dances that it has popularized. Everyone who hasn't been living under a rock knows about the Gangnam Style dance, right? Well, Kpop continues to be a driving force in the world of choreographed dance. Specifically, Kpop dance covers are quite popular with today's young internet users.

Long before Min and Erik from St.319 became popular singers, St.319 rise to fame came from their dance covers of popular Korean songs. In fact, St.319 was first started solely with the purpose of being a Kpop dance cover group. Today, St.319 has become more than just a dance group. It has become a full-blown youth entertainment brand involved in production, promotion, and talent acquisition.


Shuffling / Shuffle Dance

M4N is another Vietnamese dance group. Like St.319, M4N has done some popular Kpop dance covers (e.g., PSY's Daddy). It's not just Kpop, however, that has the youth of Vietnam dancing. The rising popularity of EDM and other forms of Western party/club songs are driving Vietnamese citizens to hit the dance floor now more than ever.

Seve by French music maker Tez Cadey is an extremely popular shuffle dance song. Shuffle dance, better known as shuffling in the US, is a popular EDM dance style. Shuffling is named after the rapid movement of the toes and heels when performing the shuffle dance. It is also called the Melbourne shuffle due to the dance's origin. The shuffle was first popularized in the Melbourne underground electronic dance scene.

The cornerstone of shuffling is the running man -- a dance move that was first popularized in the American hip-hop music scene. In America, The Running Man Challenge is a hot internet trend. In Asia, however, shuffling videos are all the rage. I have seen so many videos of Asian girls shuffling that the Internet now has me convinced that all Asian girls like to shuffle.


Dance Competition TV Shows

Another foreign import that is taking off in Vietnam is reality television. More and more reality competition TV shows are being aired everyday in Vietnam. There's The Voice of Vietnam. There's Vietnam's Got Talent. There's So You Think You Can Dance (Vietnam). There's even a Vietnamese version of Dancing with the Stars called VIP Dance.

You wouldn't think it, but dance is an important part of Vietnamese society. TV shows centered around dancing wouldn't exist if there wasn't a Vietnamese audience interested in the art of dance. Although there still exists a mentality that stresses practicality over the arts in Asian cultures, being trained as a dancer is something that is quite valuable. Not everyone is destined to be a doctor, lawyer, or engineer. If you're more of an entertainer like singer MLee, then appearing on shows like VIP Dance is one way to make a living and contribute to society.


Vietnam is a nation that is well-connected to the rest of the world. It is a nation that is now a global player. Foreign ideas and trends are constantly flowing into Vietnam. This influx of different ways of thinking is now helping to shape the country. As much as Vietnam is a consumer of foreign goods, Vietnam is starting to become a serious producer of goods and services itself.

Take the case of St.319 for example. Young Vietnamese Kpop fans went from watching Kpop video to covering Kpop dances to promoting their own Vietnamese artists. Who knew that doing dance covers would lead into something bigger?

Dance in Vietnamese society is evolving. It's importance and place in society has grown significantly. Be it through YouTube videos or television shows, modern dance culture is helping usher Vietnam into a more global world.

SĨ THANH - KHÔNG TRỞ VỀ [OFFICIAL] - Fan Dance

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