Afrobeat music is gaining global recognition and we can’t attribute this to the artists alone. Nigerian dancers play a major role in making some of these songs go viral through their various Tik-Tok challenges and different dance routines. Musicians now pay dancers to promote their songs on their social media pages. While there are a lot of dancers out there, we are choosing to focus on the top notable dancers who have taken the industry to a whole other level with their unique heritage and skills.
Here are five Nigerian dancers who are changing the game with Afrobeats:
Afro-fusion dancer and choreographer, Izzy Odigie captivates global audiences with her creative and fierce moves. Born in Brooklyn, she discovered her talent for dancing in high school while growing up in Nigeria. Since then, she has participated in various competitions and produced some dance movies.
For Odigie, dance is a way to interpret music, melodies, culture and express her feelings in the most rhythmic way possible. In Iziegbe, a dance movie directed by Izzy Odigie, she refers to dancers as critical artists rather than just eye candy or props for entertainment as people view them to be. She further encourages dancers to create a conceptually driven body of work rather than just short video clips.
Regina Eigbe is a Nigerian dancer and fashion model based in London. She was born in the United Kingdom but hails from Nigeria. She seizes every opportunity to promote the African culture through her dance moves as well as her style of dressing.
She created the choreography and dance challenge for Wizkid and Drake’s One Dance on Tik Tok and has done the same for Rema’s Bounce and Gyakie and Omah Lay’s Forever. Through her choreography, she introduces African dance routines and sounds to the world. She currently runs dance tutorials for teenagers and viewers via her Youtube channel.
Born on the 21st of October 1996, Iwe Pascal Odinaka popularly known as Pocolee started dancing from his college days at Lagos State University (LASU). He made a major breakthrough after a video of him dancing to Zlatan’s Zanku (legwork) went viral on Instagram.
According to him, Zlatan invited him over after he saw the post and made known his intention to feature him in his music video. Since then, he has been performing in several shows and worked with A-list Nigerian artists like Davido, Wizkid Burna Boy, Tiwa Savage, Reekado Banks, Naira Marley, and Niniola. He is also responsible for the latest viral dance trend “Commot body now.”
Odumewu Debbie is a Nigerian dancer and media influencer who started dancing as a means to inspire people to follow their hearts and create a platform for themselves. On the 24th of November 2017, Pinkie Debbie broke a Guinness world record by dancing for straight 150 hours.
She reportedly started dancing at The Palms Shopping Mall, Victoria Island, Lagos state from November 17th to November 24th. The Guinness world record for dancing was previously held by an Indian dancer who danced for 122 hours before Debbie decided to set the pace.
Sarah Olaniran, popularly known as Sayrah Chips, is a 25-year-old versatile American-based-Nigerian dancer and choreographer. She found love for dance at a very tender age. She was often seen dancing during her leisure time.
She decided to pursue her love for dance by studying dance and choreography at the University of Columbia. While still reading choreography, she kickstarted her career by dancing on social media platforms and has since featured in different music videos with her team. She’s currently rated as one of the top African A-list dancers.