Electronic Music Dance Culture

Liquid Instruction & Technical Information

The below concepts are the foundational elements to which Liquid dance is derived. Some of these concepts date back to the beginning of the style. There have since been additional concepts that have come to be through the contribution of active Liquid practitioners.

We are actively adding to this section. Over time you will see video instruction begin to be populated that will provide you with a visual representation of how each concept is performed! Hang in there with us as we work to get all of our content refined and populated!

The Concept of “Flow" in Liquid Dancing

The term “Flow” is used to define what is needed in order to correctly perform Liquid. When done correctly the dancer creates an illusion of a "flow" going through or around the body evenly and steadily with a controlled speed and destination to the rhythm of the music.

The flow can go for eternity, this is where the technical and creative side of liquid shine. Good liquid dancers pride themselves on correct flow and how intricate their Liquid can be.

Hand Flow:

The starting point for liquid dance: Like a wave in the ocean it starts small and grows greater and greater. So is true with Liquid “flow"; it starts out in the hands and works its way outward to the body. Attention to detail put into the "hand flow" will define a liquid dancer and be pivitol in showing their unique style. Exceptional liquid dancers can create the illusion of having no bones in the hands and keep a steady flow indefinitely with no unintentional stops, stutters or breaks.

Body flow:

Body Flow is a term used to describe the relationship your body has with the liquid you are performing, the space around you and how the flow you are producing in your hands and arms push and pull to manipulate body movement

Speed Control:

Speed is important in liquid, the flow must always be kept in a constant steady speed to create and keep the illusion. Speed changes can also occur, but should be done in concert with the music’s tempo or sounds.

Styles of Liquid Dancing

Hand flow Liquid:

This style developed in the north east of the United States and was spread westward by party people traveling from mostly NYC. This style is identifiable by its long flowing movements and intricate patterns. Possessing some of the oldest traceable roots in history, this style is the closest to be being the “parent” style for all other forms of liquid. As the dance spread it morphed and mutated to fit the demographic of the musical and social tastes where it was being practiced.

Orbital Liquid:

This developed in the Midwest of the United States in towns like Chicago, Detroit and Milwaukee. The style itself starts out in the chest and the illusion is kept by manipulating an imaginary ball in the center chest. This style is very unique and very few people can do it well.

Gloved Liquid:

This style developed when party people discovered white gloves in blacklights glow very brightly. This style relies more on speed then technique. The hands are moved to create “trails” in the blacklights that give a “liquid” effect. This style is very fast and is mostly practiced on the west coast of the United States and Canada. The use of the hands is predominant in this style and has many similar appearances to the early Hand Flow styles.

Digital Liquid:

Digital Liquid was created organically by the practitioners of Liquid and Digitz. They started combining the flow of liquid with the intricate finger movements and patterns of Digitz. LPEric coined the term “Digital Liquid” in late 2003 during a discussion on the old reflective message board. The technique Folds has also been incorporated into this style of liquid.

Light Source Liquid:

This style uses various light sources from glowsticks, maglights, flashlights, photons etc to create intricate trails. In this style the Liquid is external to the body and the flow is reliant on the trail which the light leaves behind as it is moving.

Technical Conepts of Liquid Dance:

Flow:

To move or run smoothly with unbroken continuity as in a manner characteristic of a fluid. The first and most important concept in liquid dancing is mastering your own personal flow.

Rail:

To range in a line. In order to give the illusion substance it sometimes helps to run the illusion along rails. This is accomplished through the use of imaginary paths along which you flow can travel. These paths or rails can vary from the simple to the complex depending on your own personal skill, taste and imagination.

Contour:

To make or shape the outline of a figure ,shape, body or mass. To contour is to make your liquid run the shape of the object. The objects themselves can range from imaginary geometric shapes to actual physical objects and on the most commonly used object the human body.

Split:

Having been divided or separated. A break or a split is used to give liquid more dimension by slighting maligning your hands along a vertical plane you will find your liquid will become much more versatile. Now your liquid can pass in places that were once impossible but be careful to maintain the illusion of the flow especially when one hand passes over the other.

Folds: 

A technique found in digital liquid that is meant to trace the structure of a 2-dimensional plane in 3-dimensional space. The ‘fold’ is the act at which the hands turn to show both sides of the plane OR move from one plane to the next. This movement emulates folding an imaginary piece of paper through tracing the linear lines within each plane. Similar to the Liquid Lights style of rails, this style of liquid was developed by Prime & Relic in 2000, and is now widely used in digitz and finger tutting.