Clyde Evans, Jr.

Soul Train

5:45–6:30 pm
Annenberg Court, Main Floor
Join In · the audience is invited to participate

“Line dances spotlight everyone and I believe that was the purpose of the Soul Train line dance, to spotlight as many dancers on the show that they could. Dancers would come down a line of dancers on each side of them, struttin' their stuff, always towards the camera or end of the line. As they finished after 10-15 seconds the camera would shift to another line on the show, which made for extremely exciting viewing. You'd spot your favorites and kinda look for them every time there was another line dance. The line dance was a highlight of the show and was imitated at many social events like weddings, birthday parties, and even clubs. The east coast dance shows also picked up on doing them.

I was a part of several televised line dances myself right here in Philly. The show I was on was called Dance Party U.S.A. (the nationally syndicated version of Dancin' On Air—the local Philadelphia dance show that featured kids dancing from different areas of Philly and many up-and-coming musical superstars like Will Smith back in his Fresh Prince days, Madonna, Duran Duran, etc. during the 80s). We came down the line as a solo or a couple and the host or announcer introduced us to the country by reading our name and some fun fact about each dancer. We were already familiar with the Soul Train Line dancing but being a participant was very different. I believe it was a moment for each dancer to shine a little or as much as they wanted, which was something everyone wanted to do. That's the thing about these line dances, participation + appreciation = shine. Some showed off their best moves, others their clothes or style or dance partner...all wanted to look cool...everyone had something of value to showcase down the line while everyone focused their attention on them...what an incredible feeling that is. I'll aim to do that at this event.”

— Clyde Evans, Jr.

Clyde Evans, Jr., has been dancing Hip Hop since age 11. Performing has taken him all over the world, to places such as Africa, Italy, London, Brazil, France, Finland, and Australia. He has performed with stars like Will Smith, Jay Leno, Halle Berry, Mark Wahlberg, Robert Redford, Michelle Pfeiffer, Bruce Willis, and M. Night Shyamalan, as well as appeared in commercials for the Superbowl, dance contest on BET, So You Think You Can Dance, performances for the X-Games, Sunny D as well as magazine and other print media. Evans has truly enjoyed the opportunities performing Hip-Hop has afforded him, especially when it was for Michael Jackson, but teaching has been equally rewarding. He has trained dancers who have appeared on America’s Best Dance Crew and in the Step Up movie franchise. Evans now instructs at both Montgomery Community College and Drexel University. Sharing what he has learned with those who have a desire to learn it is what’s most important to him!

Photo: Dancin’ On Air