By now we are all familiar with the power of the internet — with one short video, an artist can go from struggling to superstar status seemingly overnight.
Salif Gueye, a 22-year-old street performer from Paris, France, is one of those success stories who owes his newfound fame solely to exposure on the internet. Salif has been a huge fan of Michael Jackson’s since he was just 3 years old, and now a video of him dancing to Jackson’s song, “Rock With You” has landed him some very famous fans of his own.
It all started when Salif was out dancing on the streets around the Stravinsky Fountain near Paris’s famed Centre Pompidou, a hot spot for artists and tourists in search of culture in the city of lights. A friend record Salif’s smooth, self-taught dance moves as he danced to the MJ song in front of a crowd of people eating at various sidewalk cafes.
It takes less than five seconds to recognize that he is one talented dancer!
Salif has mastered the art of making robotic, pop and lock dance styles look fluid yet flashy. His style is definitely reminiscent of his idol’s, but it’s when Salif does Jackson’s patented moonwalk dance that audiences really sat up at attention.
To put it mildly, Salif nailed it. He moves as if he’s walking on an invisible treadmill, which is incredibly hard to do on a gritty surface like concrete. This is no smooth, varnished wood floor; this is a porous surface that shoes don’t exactly glide over.
Salif moonwalks backward, forwards, and even sideways!
It’s so phenomenal, in fact, that after this 45-second video clip went viral, stars like The Rock and LeBron James shared the clip with their followers. Soon, Salif’s Instagram following expanded from just under 10,000 fans to over 1.3 million! Not only that, but Ellen DeGeneres was so impressed that she flew Salif to Los Angeles to appear on her show.
“Amazing experience with #theellenshow. I just wanna say thank you, Ellen, to bring me on your show. I can’t believe what happened. Like I said, is a dream come true and it’s only the beginning. Thanks, my people, for support and all the love u send to me. Thanks u all. Thank god. I love u all,” Salif wrote about his experience on Instagram.
This is one dancer we can’t wait to see more of. In fact, we were sorry to see the clip end at just 45 seconds. We could watch him all day! Check out the newest viral sensation below, and be sure to share.
Smoothest moonwalk ever. pic.twitter.com/1KxXkchcVx
— Complex (@Complex) October 19, 2018
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