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Dance Culture

January 3, 2017

Dance music saw a resurgence in the 1990s. The new electronic beats that first filled the floors of gay clubs now conquered the mainstream.

22.03.2016 DW Doku 7850---90s-Dance-Culture

What started out in the 1980s as a niche genre with acid house and the cute smiley logo would over the course of the following decade morph into mass culture. This report revisits the clubs, fashion trends and cultural movements spawned by the phenomenon.

Dance culture came to enjoy a mass audience in the 1990s, with techno clubs popping up on Ibiza and elsewhere, and the likes of Madonna and Janet Jackson incorporating house beats into their songs. The Love Parade drew millions of revelers to recently reunified Berlin every summer - one of a new wave of events where ravers equipped with whistles, neon-colored clothing and no shortage of ecstasy pills danced the nights away. The Hacienda club in Manchester, England became synonymous with the rise of acid house, while London-based Ministry of Sound and other superclubs launched their own music labels, merchandising, exclusive parties on Ibiza, and even package deals - the ultimate getaway from the daily routine back home. The escapism of dance culture was a major factor in the decade's music. Videos by C&C Music Factory, Deee-Lite and other house-inspired acts enjoyed massive airplay on MTV. And back to the present day: once belittled as cheap and trashy, eurodance is now undergoing an impressive renaissance thanks to artists such as Stromae, Usher and Lady Gaga resurrecting the high-energy sound from 1990s' continental Europe.

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