How to dance thriller easy

Why we love to dance Thriller — MyCharleston

As Halloween approaches, the soundtrack to Michael Jackson’s Thriller will soon be heard blaring out of dance studios worldwide. So why do we still get such a thrill from dancing Thriller?

Jackson’s Thriller routine is famously recognisable all over the world and is still learnt by thousands of people young and old. For me the magic of Thriller is that the dance routine is quite easy to learn. Like many great pieces of work it is simple and yet dynamic to watch. But the real magic is that the dancers take on the character of a zombie. This is so liberating because the pressure to look cool and stylish as a dancer is gone. In fact, you need to look decidedly stiff as you begin the routine with a zombie styled walk accented with a head twitch.

The routine contains a number of simple Zombie walks which are so effective that I still remember how spellbound I was when I first saw it in 1983. Back then music videos were a new genre and Thriller took this medium to a new level, with dancing, costumes and a narrative. Thriller has a Shakespearian quality to it as it presents a story, within a story – within a story. The inspiration came from the film An American Werewolf in London. Whilst the song and the video have stood the test of time, it is the dance routine which everyone watches and wants to learn.  

The Choreographer was Michael Peters, nicknamed ‘The Gran Varones’, his work includes Broadways acclaimed musical Dreamgirls and the film Sister Act. However, Peters is most famous for his work on music videos where he collaborated with artist such as Donna Summer, Lionel Richie, Diana Ross and of course Michael Jackson. Speaking about his experience of working with Michael Peters, Jackson said;

“ It was a delicate thing to work on because I remember my original approach was, ‘How do you make zombies and monsters dance without it being comical?’ So I said, ‘We have to do just the right kind of movement so it doesn’t become something that you laugh at.’ But it just has to take it to another level. So I got in a room with Michael Peters, and he and I together kind of imagined how these zombies move by making faces in the mirror. I used to come to rehearsal sometimes with monster makeup on, and I loved doing that. So he and I collaborated and we both choreographed the piece and I thought it should start like that kind of thing and go into this jazzy kind of step, you know. Kind of gruesome things like that, not too much ballet or whatever.” -Michael Jackson

The dance talent of Jackson himself is what really brings this dance piece to life – forgive the pun! His perfect execution of each move is made even more incredible when you discover that he had no formal training and was entirely self-taught. He believed “the greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work.” He himself learnt by watching classic entertainers such as Gene Kelly, Bob Fosse, and Charlie Chaplin. Michael had a strong work ethic and practiced endlessly until he could pop, lock, and moonwalk at a level unseen by the world.

Michael Jackson’s dancing has always inspired me and in my interpretation of the Thriller routine I have tried to include simple moves, which look effective. The starting point in the workshop is to discover your ‘Inner Zombie’ with some travel moves. This is then developed into a move which I call ‘Zombie climbs through a window’ I love this move because you get to engage your imagination and be playful.

The routine has some of the most iconic moves including everyone’s favourite - Zombie with Monster Hands! This is when the Zombies cross lines with a side to side walking move.  It’s one of those moves which just feels good when you dance it. It’s also one of the most iconic moves from the video, so there is a real sense of achievement when people master this one.  We end the routine with Jackson’s classic move in which his finger points to the sky as he sings ‘Ow’ then we all melt to the ground in a Zombie pile up.

The dance workshop is open to a range of abilities whether you are a beginner adult dancer or experienced, the focus is on being playful and having fun. We would definitely encourage you to dress up so we can really get into the spirit of things, and if you are up for it you can take part in the video at the end of the class. If you want to bring children, we would love to have them but do contact us before booking so we can check it is suitable for their age and dance level. 

The Thriller dance workshop is taking place on Halloween weekend. We are running two dance classes so you can learn online or join us in the dance studio.  All the details are below and a link so you can book your space and join us for the ‘Thrill’ of your life! Wa, ha, ha!

Online Zoom Workshop, Friday 29th October, 6.30pm - 7.30pm

In-studio Workshop, Saturday 30th October 2-4pm, Brighton University dance studios

CopperKnob - Michael Jackson - Thriller

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Michael Jackson

Line Dances To This Music

JR's Thriller  John Read (IRE) - October 2022

    48 Count    2 Wall    High beginer   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

AQ Thriller Flash Mob  Lynnda Wile (USA) & Lynda Hamilton (USA) - September 2022

    80 Count    4 Wall    Beginner   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thriller C  Carrie McNeish (USA) - October 2021

    64 Count    2 Wall    -   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thriller  Daniel Trepat (NL) - October 2008

    48 Count    2 Wall    Phrased Newcomer   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thriller EZ  David Levesque - August 2018

    48 Count    2 Wall    High Beginner   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Monster Thrills  Sue Demitropoulos (CAN) - October 2016

    32 Count    4 Wall    Ultra Beginner - Novelty   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson : (Single Edit)

Ez Thriller  Joan Caviness (USA) - October 2014

    32 Count    2 Wall    Improver   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thrill To Dance  Barbara Lowe (UK) - December 2013

    24 Count    2 Wall    Ultra Beginner   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thriller  Amy Christian (USA) - October 2013

    32 Count    4 Wall    Improver   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Zombie Thriller  Amanda Andrews (USA) - October 2013

    48 Count    4 Wall    Intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Lurking In The Dark  Tina Argyle (UK) - October 2012

    32 Count    1 Wall    Easy Fun Dance   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson : (of course! lol)

Thriller  Winnie Yu (CAN) - October 2011

    128 Count    1 Wall    Phrased High Intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson : (Album: Special Edition)

Thriller  Arne Stakkestad (BEL) & Jessica Stakkestad - February 2008

    - Count    1 Wall    Phrased Intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Halloween  Daan Geelen (NL)

64 Count    2 Wall    beginner/intermediate mixed rhythm   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Frankenwalk  Tim Hand (USA)

48 Count    4 Wall    beginner/intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Dark Child 2000  Shaun Maguire (USA)

32 Count    4 Wall    beginner/intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Close To Midnight  Karen Dower (UK)

64 Count    2 Wall    intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thriller  Mary McConnell & Marilene Sisco

    - Count    2 Wall    Advanced   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Shirley's Thriller 2002  Levi J. Hubbard (USA)

64 Count    4 Wall    intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

Thriller  "Calamity" Jane Newhard (USA)

40 Count    4 Wall    beginner/intermediate   Music: Thriller - Michael Jackson

How to learn to dance: video tutorials for those who are not afraid to try

January 28, 2017 Likbez Sports and fitness

If you decide to learn how to dance, don't delay. Just repeat after the instructors the basic movements of modern, street, ballroom and social dances.

Iya Zorina

Author of Lifehacker, athlete, CCM

Answers to the main questions

Is it difficult to learn to dance?

It's really no more difficult than anything else you're new to. Dance directions are very different from each other. Even if you have mastered one of them, it will be unusual for you to do the other.

However, all dances are connected with the ability to control one's body. And if this is not new to you (for example, you were engaged in martial arts, gymnastics, swimming, and even more so dancing), it will be easier for you to adapt to new movements than a beginner who is not friendly with his body.

Even if you have a rather wooden body, you should not despair. The secret of success is constant practice.

Learning to dance from video lessons is more difficult than from courses. If your body is flexible and obedient, you can still do something similar to the movements of the instructor from the video. If not, you can quickly become disillusioned with dancing: the difference between what is shown in the video and what you will see in the mirror will be too strong.

Still worth a try. At least in order to determine the appropriate direction.

How many times a week do you dance?

Muscles may initially ache after exercise. But, unlike strength training or running, the body does not require a recovery period.

Therefore, you can safely practice dancing all the time. One of my teachers said to dance 25 hours a day. In any case, the more you dance, the more noticeable the progress.

How to learn how to dance modern dances

From this direction we have chosen three types that can often be found in the schedules of fitness clubs and dance schools. And the first - plastic and insanely beautiful contemporary.


Abel M/

Contemporary combines elements of modern jazz, yoga and martial arts, seasoned with improvisation and attention to breathing. This is freedom and plasticity - the natural beauty of movement.

Here is a clip with a contemporary combination. Give it a try, just be sure to warm up and stretch well before you teach.

And here is the second part:

By the way, about the warm-up. In the video below - a full lesson with a warm-up, stretching and analysis of the combination. In English, but everything is clear and without translation.

If you do not have time to repeat or consider how some movement is done, set the speed to 0.25.

If you like combinations but can't repeat them yet, here are some more videos of routine contemporary lessons.

You will most likely have to do the same in the dance school before you can perform beautiful combinations.

Strip plastic

Many people confuse pole exercises and strip plastic. The second is just a sensual dance that can be performed without a pole.

Doing strip plastic, you will not stand at the barre and pull the toe. Everything here is based on the natural sexuality of the female body. Of course, many teachers diversify strip plastic with elements of contemporary or modern, Latin American dances and other areas, but it all depends on the teacher.

How beautiful your dance will look again depends on how well you know how to control your body, how mobile your joints are and how stretched your muscles and tendons are.

In the video below there is an analysis of the combination. Not too simple, but very sensual and beautiful. And you don't have to move on the floor, so your knees don't get hurt.

And here is a playlist with strip plastic lessons from different dance schools. There are both individual movements and combinations.

And one more, simpler combination. Try it if the first one doesn't work.

Belly dance (bellydance)


This is a sensual and beautiful dance that, among other things, helps to develop plasticity and even get rid of some health problems.

There are a lot of belly dance lessons on YouTube. Below are some of them.

The basic movements are explained here very clearly:

And the second part:

Below is a playlist with five lessons for beginners from another teacher.

How to learn to dance street dancing


Hip-hop has only been around for about 50 years. But during this time, many trends and styles have appeared, with different elements, plasticity, and special features.

In addition, modern hip-hop is often complemented by movements from other dance styles, which provides even richer vocabulary and original combinations.

But before you come up with your own combinations, you need to master the basics. In the playlist below you will find basic moves, steps and many combinations. They explain everything in an accessible way. If you can't make it, slow down the video speed.

The videos in the next big playlist explain the concepts of inertia, manipulation and isolation in hip-hop. There's also a story about improvisation, battle behavior if you're up for it, and a few variations of ground hip-hop moves (on the floor) to diversify your combinations.



Breakdancing consists of different elements: tricks and power movements on the floor, waves, fixations, and also changes in the levels at which the dance is performed.

Here on this channel there is training in different styles: Waving, King Tut, Robot, - analysis of the technique of power elements and basic movements at different levels.

Below is a video detailing the 6 steps element from Footwork.

And here you can see how the "turtle" is performed.

Here is a voluminous playlist, which contains quite a lot of breakdance elements with a detailed analysis of the technique of dance and strength elements.


Lauren Wood/

Sexy dance in which you need to actively work the buttocks, hips, stomach and arms. In this playlist you will find several lessons with analysis of twerk movements.

How to learn to dance ballroom dancing


At least once in your life you will surely need a waltz. Moreover, it is not so difficult to dance it at an amateur level.

Here are four good lessons that will teach you how to hold your hands and do the basic waltz steps in pairs or individually.

How to learn to dance social dances

Social dances are not designed for competition, but for communication between partners and enjoyment. Improvisation is welcome here, through which the dancer can express himself, his feelings and emotions.


This dance comes from the Dominican Republic. He is very sensual and sometimes erotic. The basis of bachata is four steps with an emphasis on the last one. In the dance, there are rotations and throws of the partner, small lifts.

Despite the fact that bachata is a pair dance, solo combinations can also be taught. For example, if you don't have a partner yet.

In the video below - an overview of the main steps. Where to transfer body weight, how to hold hands, how to focus - everything is told in the most detailed way.

And here is a variation of bachata from the same teacher.

Below is a playlist for those who want to dance bachata together. These are Dominican bachata lessons from the Imagine dance school.


youtube. com

This is a passionate couple dance from Africa, more specifically from Angola. Now it is performed all over the world and is especially popular in France and Portugal.

Steps, lots of hip work and close contact with partner. Sometimes very tight. For example, in the style of tarraxinha, a slower and more sensual version of this social dance.

Here is a playlist of kizomba lessons.

And another playlist with videos from another dance studio.

That's it. If you have favorite tutorial videos, share them in the comments to the article.
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How to learn to dance shuffle - Lifehacker

December 15, 2019 Likbez Sports and fitness

Master the basic moves, then improvise and have fun.

Iya Zorina

Lifehacker author, athlete, CCM

This style of dance involves a lot of freedom and improvisation. That is why he is so good. You can master the basic movements in a couple of hours, and then complicate them to infinity and combine them with each other, create your own combinations and spy on others.

Dance in sneakers, socks or barefoot, in any outfit, anywhere.

Master the basic movements of the shuffle

In this style, you do all the basic movements with your feet, your arms most often move freely - according to your heart.

Running man

This is the most basic and most important shuffle movement. You can do it in three different ways.

Full foot

The movement begins by bending your knee and lifting one leg. Next, you need to simultaneously put both legs - supporting and raised - at a distance of one step from each other.

The raised leg is placed forward on a full foot, the standing one behind slips back on the ball of the foot and remains on it - the heel is not placed on the floor. The weight is evenly distributed between the two legs.

After that, it remains to return to the starting position. To do this, the front leg slides back, and at the same time, the back leg is pulled up. You find yourself in the starting position and repeat the cycle. The movement itself is soft and springy: do not stick into the floor, keep your legs relaxed.


This is a lighter and faster running man look that may be needed for some combinations. Here you put your foot not on the whole foot, but on the heel. At the same time, the one standing behind remains on the toe.

On pads

In this variation, the foot is placed forward on the pad. At the same time, the one standing behind also remains on the ball of the foot, and the body leans slightly back.


In this movement, one foot constantly makes a “herringbone” - turns the heel in and out - and the second touches the floor and immediately rises back.

When the heel of the skating leg turns inward, the toe of the other foot touches the floor; when outward, the other leg rises, turning the knee inward.

It turns out two positions: closed - when the legs are wrapped with the knees inward, and one leg is raised, and open - when the legs are turned out with the knees outward, and the toe touches the floor. Practice doing the T-step in both directions: slowly at first, then with acceleration.


You jump on one foot, and the other touches the floor in different places: on the side of the supporting leg, across, behind - anywhere you want. You can put your foot on the toe or on the heel - the latter is called a kick. The supporting leg can simply rise low or perform a T-step - move the heel out and in.


To begin, you turn your knees and toes inward and lift one leg. Then turn your toes and knees outward, and put your raised leg forward crosswise. Repeat the same with the other leg.

All movement occurs on the balls of the feet, the heels do not fall to the floor. You can move both forward and backward.


First you put your feet crosswise with your toes outward with a jump, then also with a jump you spread your legs to the sides.


One leg is straight, stands on the whole foot, the other is with a bent knee on the pad. Leaning on the pad, you slip the foot of a straight leg back, as if wiping the sole on the floor.

Immediately after the slip, you turn around. In the turn, the straight leg bends and goes to the pad, and the one that was on the pad, on the contrary, turns on the heel. After that, it remains only to change legs and move in the same way in the other direction.


From the starting position - standing with a raised leg, as in Running man - you turn your hips to the side with a jump and put your legs crosswise.

The front foot is on the heel, the back foot is on the ball. Then you jump back to the starting position and do the same on the other side.


From the starting position, you turn your hips to the side with a jump and spread your legs a step apart from each other. The standing foot in front is placed on the heel, the standing one behind remains on the pillow. Then, with a jump, you collect your legs and do the same on the other side.

Try other variations of the basic shuffle movements

You can perform basic movements in different directions: forward and backward, turning around. This will give you more freedom to improvise.

Variations Running man

Do several times in place and then turn around. You can also try walking this way to the side. Each time the leg will need to be placed slightly crossed in order to slowly move to the side.

Variations T‑step

You can lower your foot on the toe, on the whole foot, touch the floor to the side of the supporting leg or forward and behind it.

You can also keep the other leg on the floor at all - leave it on the toe and turn the knee in and out.

Variations Diamond

Here one more element is added to the movement – ​​the heel strike. In the starting position, you wrap the toes of the feet and knees inward, and then jump on the heels, turning the socks to the sides.

From this position, without jumping, you turn your toes and knees inward, cross your legs with a jump, turning your feet with your toes outward, and then return to the starting position.

Charleston Variations

After three turns of the Charleston, turn both toes in one direction and then in the other. At the end, you can turn the knee to the side.

Connect familiar shuffle moves

While you lack the skills to move freely and come up with something of your own, learn a few combinations. They contain interesting movements that will replenish your dance vocabulary.

Combination 1

This is a simple combination of two basic movements - Running man and T-step. First take five Running man steps, then four T-steps to the side and repeat the same in the opposite direction.

Combination 2

Another combination of two basic movements. Here you do three Running mans, then one T‑step with a back foot touch, and two front heel touch kicks. The same on the other side.

Combination 3

There are no standard steps here, but there are already familiar Sidekick and transition from heels to toes.

Learn more difficult combinations

We will add some videos with good combinations.

1. Cool video for beginners: movements are repeated in slow motion to make it easier to dance to the music.

2. And here the combination is analyzed step by step in slow motion, dividing it into three parts. Very comfortably. Look for more on this channel, there are several such analyzes.

3. No slowdown here, just a great combination. But you already know almost all the movements, so you can figure it out. If something is not clear, watch the video at a speed of 0.25.

Pick the music and improvise

Surely you have favorite songs to shuffle to. Include them and start with basic movements: just do the Running man and periodically add different elements when you want. Move in different directions, relax and have fun.

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