Dancing with myself — and, virtually, everybody else

Dancing with myself — and virtually everyone

Online dance parties are all the (ahem) rave. Just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t still get your groove on.
Published: April 10, 2020 | Updated: April 13th, 2020 at 9:13 pm


Streaming from Isolation stream screenshot
Streaming from Isolation stream on YouTube. Streamed and screenshotted on April 3.

Cabin fever is setting in as COVID-19 turns many of us into shut-ins. To release us from our emotional confinement, DJs are bringing dance parties to living rooms across the globe. Here are five to help enliven your stuck-at-home days — and nights.

Club Quarantine

Noted for popularizing the trend of bringing the quarantined together online to dance, DJ D-Nice, on March 17, held his first dance party on his Instagram live. The first dance party had about 200 of his friends and followers in attendance. Then, word spread and within days his “Club Quarantine” grew to 150,000 visitors. Partiers were in the same “room” with such celebrities as Drake, Michelle Obama, Oprah and presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden.

Club Q

A separate, unrelated dance party hosted on Zoom, also called “Club Quarantine,” or Club Q, connects the queer community. Founded and usually hosted by a few Toronto Gen Zers, Club Q happens nightly from 9 p.m. until midnight. It has a capacity of 1,000, especially on the nights when a celeb like Charli XCX is the DJ.

Club Q zoom dance party
Club Q online zoom party, @theonethatsugly DJ-ing.

United We Stream

When Berlin nightclubs closed temporarily on March 13, thousands of employees and artists lost their jobs. The city’s nightclubs responded by “bringing the biggest possible digital club to your home,” according to the United We Stream website. In addition to providing streams from a variety of clubs several days a week, the platform created a fund to help struggling clubs.

DJ Gareth Brooks, for United We Stream. (Manchester Evening News)
DJ Gareth Brooks, one of the DJs for United We Stream.

Streaming From Isolation

London’s Boiler Room nightclub launched a program of livestreamed live shows “direct from artists’ homes and private spaces.” The shows, while free, serve as fundraisers, with donations going to Global FoodBanking Network. The site plays a combination of live music and DJ sets, with the latter including a variety of techno, house, and reggaeton.

Insomniac Virtual Raves

On March 20 and 21, the events and festival promoter Insomniac livestreamed the Beyond Wonderland Virtual Rave-A-Thon, a massive dance party, featuring trance, dubstep, drum & bass, among other styles. Publications report that the livestreams received 3.5 million views. You can keep the party going by streaming a “rewind” of the rave.

Fermata: Arts & Culture in the Time of Coronavirus
This article is part of the Fermata: Arts and Culture in the Time of Coronavirus series reported by students in the Critical Writing course at the Newhouse School. Fermata features stories on the impact of the pandemic on a wide range of artists and cultural figures, from musicians and comedians to restaurateurs and boutique owners.

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