How to Plan a Flash Mob

IMG_4967So I know that this post would have been better written in 2010, at the peak of the flash mob‘s coolness, but I’m writing it now in 2014 anyway. Recently, I was hosting a four-day birthday party with Saturday night being the biggest, most extravagant event. On Friday night a few of the guests came to me with an idea. They thought it would be fun to surprise the birthday girl with a flash mob the following night.

She loves to dance, so wouldn’t it be fabulous to have all of her friends bust out in the same choreographed moves?! As both a surprise and dance enthusiast, I appreciated the idea, but wondered could it be done? The answer is yes! I orchestrated, choreographed, and pulled off the whole thing and with a few basic dance moves, you can most definitely plan your very own flash mob surprise at your next event. Here’s how it’s done.

  1. What is absolutely essential to a flash mob’s success is to get everyone involved – even those people that don’t dance. A flash mob is an all or nothing sort of thing, so start by getting your crew excited.
  2. Pick a song (ours was Ice Ice Baby) and a special person, couple, or small group to start the flash mob.
  3. Make up a routine. Think about your group’s dance skills and keep things simple and easy to learn. Step claps, shuffles, punches, hip thrusts, and body rolls are a few basic ideas. Watch a video of my favorite cinematic flash mob, from the movie Friends with Benefits, below and if you need more inspiration, do a ‘basic dance cardio’ search on YouTube. Most dance cardio moves are easy enough for every skill level to master them. It doesn’t have to be long – mine was 32 counts.
  4. Teach everyone the dance! This is where things get super fun.
  5. Once everyone knows the dance, break the group up into 3 or 4 smaller groups, numbered 1, 2, 3, 4. The people who start the flash mob (these should be the strongest dancers) are group 1. The next best/most confidant dancers are group 2, with groups 3 and 4 being the weakest/least confidant dancers. You repeat the routine 4-5 times with every group filtering in on their respective rounds. So group two would join the dance on the second repeat of the moves, group 3 on the third repeat, and so on and so forth. Everyone should repeat the dance one time together after all dancers have joined.
  6. Figure out the time of the flash mob surprise and prep your DJ and any camera people. Make sure you have a space big enough for everyone to let loose — my flash mob was on the sand in front of the pirate bar that’s pictured above.
  7. During the party, do the flash mob!

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