MJ Class (Michael Jackson Style) with Phillip Dang

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From the Class Archives

 As of last update, Phillip Dang is not teaching in L.A.
He plans to teach his MJ Class in Portland, OR.

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MJ Class (Michael Jackson Style)

Taking Class

In Phillip Dang's MJ Class, he shares his lifelong passion for Michael Jackson's dancing and deep knowledge of his moves. A skilled Michael Jackson-style dancer, Phillip believes MJ's true dancing greatness came when he was freestyling in his performances. So he wants dancers to learn not just video routines from him, but the essence of Michael Jackson's style—to be able to move and flow like MJ without choreography.

In MJ Class, Phillip teaches classic Michael Jackson moves including kicks, spins, points, slides, and the moonwalk, with an emphasis on the fine points that make MJ's dancing so distinctive. Not every dancer who loves Michael Jackson has a desire to master his style so fully, but those who do are dedicated. Some of Phillip's students practice hard on their MJ moves, and drive long distances to attend the class.

Move and flow like MJ without choreography.

MJ Class is open level and caters to all ages and skill levels. Class members express appreciation for Phillip's Michael Jackson expertise, patience, and clear communication. When he teaches, Phillip really spends time on the individual moves, offering gentle corrections till the class is catching on.

On a visit, we found the atmosphere relaxed and enjoyable. MJ Class draws an easygoing, diverse group of people who have in common a love for learning Michael Jackson's moves.

In Class with Phillip Dang

Teaching his 90-minute independent class one Sunday in Hollywood, Phillip began with light stretching followed by a thorough warmup of MJ basics. It doesn't matter how long you've practiced, Phillip says—these foundational moves are a must in mastering MJ's style!

Phillip developed a simple warmup routine combining arm gestures such as points in different directions and variations. After extensive practice, each student took a turn to perform the combination by themselves. Phillip encouraged dancers to freestyle before starting the choreography.

Next, each dancer took a turn to make up their own eight count using MJ's moves.

"There's no wrong way," Phillip said.

The wide variety of MJ moves used by the different dancers suggested how much Phillip's students learn from him over time.

Next, the class worked on a combination from the learning series Phillip has developed. Most of the time, the class learns these short routines designed to teach the fundamentals of MJ's style. Now and then, Phillip mixes in classic routines like "Billie Jean" and "Smooth Criminal."

Most people who teach Michael Jackson classes jump straight to the video choreography, Phillip says. But his students learn a solid foundation of MJ's moves and technique in class—so when they get to the video routines, they can really make them look good!

If the students in class on a given day have enough experience, Phillip says, after dancing the routine, they'll practice freestyling.

At the end of class, Phillip leaves ten or fifteen minutes just to go over moves with individual students who have questions. And on Phillip's YouTube site, dancers can find breakdowns of some of his learning series combinations to use in practicing at home.

About This Class Description

Hip-Hop Dance Guide Los Angeles specializes in information on adult hip-hop classes and dance studios in L.A. In addition to detailed featured class descriptions, we also offer briefer class descriptions. This allows us to add more classes, more quickly.

This class description last reviewed: January 2, 2014.
This class description last updated: January 2, 2014.

*       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *

From the Class Archives

 As of last update, Phillip Dang is not teaching in L.A.
He plans to teach his MJ Class in Portland, OR.

*       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *

MJ Class (Michael Jackson Style)

Class in Brief

Phillip Dang is a skilled Michael Jackson-style dancer who believes MJ's true dancing greatness came when he was freestyling in his performances. Rather than emphasize video routines, Phillip trains dancers in MJ dance technique and teaches them to move and flow like Michael Jackson without choreography.

In MJ Class, Phillip teaches classic Michael Jackson moves including kicks, spins, points, slides, and the moonwalk. Most of the time, the class practices short routines from the learning series Phillip has developed to teach the fundamentals of MJ's style. Once in a while, he mixes in classic routines like "Billie Jean" and "Smooth Criminal." When experienced students are in class, they also practice freestyling.

Phillip is a patient teacher and good communicator, and he leaves ten or fifteen minutes at the end of his 90-minute class just to help individual dancers who have questions.

MJ Class an all-ages open-level class that draws an easygoing, diverse group of people who have in common a love for learning Michael Jackson's moves.