2020 Feature, Large Newsroom winner

Rise of the Dancefluencer


Los Angeles Times

Feature, Large Newsroom


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About the Project

“Rise of the Dancefluencers” looks at how dancers who were once deemed too fringe because of their look, shape or style have broken through in the world of commercial dance — and are reshaping the kind of talent you see in music videos, at concerts, in movies and on TV.

Performers who have unconventional body types for dance, or who use a wheelchair, or who flout gender norms, or who specialize in ethnic styles have bypassed traditional hierarchies to build a fan base, secure work and make a living with their talent and passion.

Their stories are told through a layered approach: The primary layer is a deeply reported article that documents the trend with abundant interviews and colorful anecdotes punctuated with dynamic videos. The text is complemented by animated, personality-filled bio boxes that explain where these dancers started and how they exploded their careers, with links to their personal social accounts. Still photography captures the artists interacting with their communities. Charts reporting the income that dancers can make on Instagram and YouTube distill additional quantitative data in an easy-to-read, impactful way. The videos convey the dancers’ infectious energy and diverse styles.