The flash mob, that is. For those not in the know, it’s not as inappropriate as it sounds.
Flash mobs appear to be spontaneous happenings, stealthily organized underground. Actions can range from a large group abruptly crowding a retail store to an overwhelming number of people each dropping a pencil, at the same time, in a train station.
Resisting the urge to go subliminal, the original flash mobs avoid overtly political statements and are staged purely for the artistic appeal or fun factor.
The beauty of flash mobs comes from the location. In the beginning, city parks and shopping malls played host. As the trend has taken hold and evolved, venues have also changed.
Take a step back for a second. Remember the Aflac duck, mascot for the insurance company, who always seems to know what’s coming? Despite the never-ending forethought on the part of the feathered icon, a convention put on by the company was mobbed on Aug. 6.
There was nothing that duck could do about it.
The mob, organized and choreographed by somewhat-aficionado Kris Mohfanz, was of the progressive variety. Flyers were distributed to dance studios in the city and the ever-ready Craigslist served as a recruitment tool as well.
The turn-out might have been small according to mob standards, but the enthusiasm level was respectable. Mohfanz also seemed to have the routine down pat, having choreographed similar mobs at Planet Hollywood in Nov. 2009 and July 2010.
Mohfanz’s signature song, appropriate to location, is “Phamous” by MIDI Mafia (“When you up in Vegas/Can’t nobody blame us for acting phamous….”).
Enough with logistics. The point: flash mobs, since inception, have proven that they are intrinsically exciting. Also, they are moving into a more organized, more public and more purposeful sphere.
Mohfanz is greatly facilitating this. Think of it as mob syndication: utilizing much of the same choreography, the skeleton of a flash mob becomes mobile with only minimal assembly required. Add participants accrued from ads on Craigslist and posted flyers and the production is good to go.
The Aflac convention was perfectly receptive to the event, with conventioneers clapping along and droppin’ low with the dancers. However, it’s not the individual event that should be studied. It’s the trend as a whole. Keep an eye on this one. It’s going to get bigger with time.