Taeyang, "I Need A Girl (Dance Version)"
The excellence of this dance isn't found in flashy, complicated moves, but in it's subtle charm. Dara from 2NE1 plays the part of Taeyang's "girl" in the song's music video, which plays out across a spacious white room, giving all the dancers plenty of room to move. As Taeyang describes the type of girl he needs, he dances around Dara teasingly, locks arms with her and takes her for a dance, trying to convince her that she's the girl for him. Taeyang flirts with her through brief physical touches, like playfully walking his fingers along her body in sync with the soft piano parts or pulling her arms around him. Dara puts up with his advances for a moment, then pushes him away with a smile. Yet Taeyang just smiles back and keeps going for it, unfazed, shaking his hips around, trying to entice her. He expresses his excitement through shoulder and hip gyrations, finger clicks and freeze-poses with a Michael Jackson-esque finesse. Whenever Dara's back is turned, Taeyang's dance moves seem to become more vigorous as he admires her, but when she turns around, he quickly settles down, feigning innocence. It's in these small changes in the movement of the dance and in the subtle facial expressions of Taeyang and Dara that make this song stand out and compliment the emotion of the song; this dance is as much about the acting as it is the dancing. For the original version of the video, click here. --Jordan Close
After School, "Bang"
Often referred to as Korea's "Pussycat Dolls," After School takes on a drum line/pep squad theme and shows some attitude. With sharp, energetic choreography, the girls carry out the concept perfectly. Even when they all just walk in sync, the performance screams confidence. While listening to the song, many people imitate the hand movements at the "A-ha" part during the chorus. Rather than repeating a typical "cute" or "sexy" video concept, After School brings something new to the table. --Mai Nguyen
B2ST, "Breath" (숨)
Although "Shock" had a very distinct move during the chorus where the boys hold their hands in the air, then slam them down to "Shock!," the moves for "Breath" are just all around awesome and work well towards the whole concept of the song. Co-choreographed by Haw from Prepix and Mike Song from Kabba Modern, "Breath" starts out with the group waving their hand up their body to their mouth, then sweeping it out, mimicking an exhaled breathe traveling out of their lungs into the air. Following with the name and concept of the song, there are several other moves like this one that make reference to breathing, especially in the chorus when the B2ST members grab the air with both hands and pull it to their mouths, then swing their elbows out and in, showing that they can't take their breath; or when they grab their throats, as if suffocating. The end part of the chorus is the most obvious move, when they're singing "breathe in, breathe out" as all members freeze in position and inhale, exhale deeply, puffing their chests and inflating, deflating their bodies. The song fittingly ends with all B2ST members standing in a row and exhaling with their hands as they lean forward à la MJ's "Smooth Criminal." Other parts of the choreography that stand out are the circle dance during the intro, which is something unique and adds to the variety of the dance. There's also the part during the prechorus where the member who's currently singing stands in the middle as all the other members grab some part of his body and they all rock from side to side. Check out B2ST's choreography practice video for a better look at the moves and a "special" dance treat at the end. --Jordan Close
Girls' Generation, "Run Devil Run"
In contrast to their usual cutesy demeanors, Girls' Generation shows off their sexy, alluring side in "Run Devil Run." Upon hearing the song's title phrase, everybody automatically performs the same packed move. It makes sense that the "catch point" of the choreography would be the running move at the chorus, but it's not just ordinary running. It's sexy running which includes a bit of a body wave, leg flicking and hand stroking. Even Korea's "national little sister" Yuna Kim performed an ice skating rendition of the choreography. --Mai Nguyen
2PM, "I'll Be Back (Dance version)"
The dance in "I'll Be Back" involves a style called the Melbourne Shuffle, typically used with electronic music. The moves involve a lot of leg work that looks like a cross between riverdance-like kicks and running in place -- what's called the "running-man." Most of the routine is centered around the 2PM boys doing variations on the running-man, stepping to the beat, then shuffling to the side and running again, doing a 180 or 360 running-man, doing it to the side or even backwards. Although this description makes the dance sounds unimaginative and repetitive, it works well with the song's continuous beat, and done with 2PM's flashy high topped boots, it looks pretty darn cool. In between bouts of the running-man, there's also a series of back pedals accompanied by arm sweeps, and a bunch of arm pointing for dramatic effect. Overall the dance is simple and doesn't truly show 2PM's dancing ability. However, you can get a better idea of their skills in a short segment tagged onto the end of the original music video of 2PM doing some impressive acrobatic dance moves that you hardly ever see a K-pop group perform. To learn some of the dance moves from "I'll Be Back," you can check out this video and learn it from 2PM themselves. --Jordan Close
Always performing complex choreography, SHINee doesn't disappoint with "Lucifer." As a whole, the dance includes an impressive amount of detail in movement, level changes and formation changes. In particular, the "handcuff dance" made it big in Korea. What's that? The song is about a guy who is restrained by his lover, and the entire chorus represents him being bound and trying to free himself -- hence major emphasis on the arm movements. --Mai Nguyen
Miss A, "Breathe"
What can I say about this dance? It's just raw energy and all out funky fun. "Breathe" is full of butt-shakes and strange undulations done in sync to the clunky beat of the song. Most of the moves seem completely random, but that doesn't detract from the choreography in the least bit -- it just makes the fun song even more fun. Particular points that follow with the "breathe" concept of the song are where the girls hold their arms in a line at chest level and lean side to side as they breathe, and the "no-oh, no-oh" part after the chorus where they stand in place and rock their shoulders back and forth, then grab their throats for "I can't breathe," much like B2ST's dance. Then there's the goofy moves like during the chorus ('너 땜에 자꾸만 내 가슴이') where the girls do a clunky sidestep while they hold a finger to their mouths, or where Fei and Jia go into handstands and pump their legs while Min and Suzy hold them, then Min and Fei slowly crumple to the ground while Fei and Suzy air-pound them. Goofy or genius, this dance is just fun to watch and I'm sure a whole lot of fun to dance. To watch the dance version, click here. --Jordan Close
4minute, "I My Me Mine"
This song is here more because of the "memorable" aspect of this list, as the choreography for "I My Me Mine" is really basic and straightforward -- the majority of it just being the girls swinging their hips around and looking pretty; the five backup dancers and Hyunah do the majority of the real dancing throughout the video. The main sequence to mention is during the chorus with "top top top" as 4Minute throws their hands up to grab their head and roll it around, then during "I I I me mine..." where they alternate shaking one side of their body, and finally on the post chorus during "click click click click" as each back up dancer bends over in front of a 4Minute member who leans an elbow on their back and ‘clicks' around with a finger while sparkles burst out. --Jordan Close
PSY, "Right Now"
Recognized for his humor and his unique performances, PSY is back with beat-inducing "Right Now." He starts off stuck in traffic and just bursts out of his car and dances like crazy. For the most part, there are no fixed dance moves: everybody is just free-styling and letting loose. The only set choreography is from the song bridge onwards, and although it's pretty simple, it's packed with so much wild energy that it makes you want to get up and dance along. The best part is that fans can dance along and not have to worry about learning any tough choreography! --Mai Nguyen
Orange Caramel, "Magic Girl"
After School's sub-unit, Orange Caramel debuted this year with "Magic Girl (마법 소녀)." K-pop has done cute before, but not quite like this. Although it seems very J-pop influenced with the gigantic bow and lacey dresses, the girls add their own flair to it. With simple and repetitive choreography, the moves just stick in your mind. Even male idols groups such as ZE:A, U-Kiss and Infinite felt the need to perform their own parody, and they perfected every detail, down to the attire. --Mai Nguyen
4Minute's Hyunah and Rain, as the 2010 King & Queen of Sexy
Korea is known for being conservative in dress and music, but K-pop heated things up with some unforgettable sexy choreography this year.
Although she made her solo debut at the beginning of the year, Hyunah from 4Minute left a long-lasting impression with her hair flipping and pelvic thrusting in "Change." Korea's longtime sex icon Hyori may have to watch out because Hyunah may steal the title. We haven't seen this much pelvic thrusting since Rain's "I'm Coming."
Coincidentally, Rain snags our King of Sexy title this year, for his dance moves in "Love Song," in which he seems to do body waves endlessly. It doesn't hurt that he continues to remove his clothing as the video progresses. For a pop ballad, this type of risque choreography is not what you'd expect, but Rain is Rain, Korea's international superstar, and if he wants to body wave for four minutes, I don't think anybody is going to complain. --Mai Nguyen
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