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Parris Goebel embodies female empowerment in Justin Bieber’s ‘Yummy’

By Ylva-Marie Obrou

Justin Bieber’s new song, Yummy, released on the 4th of January, reached number 5 on the UK singles and number three on the billboard hits.

Justin Bieber told his fans to promote and buy the song on several social media platforms for it to hit number 1 on the charts. It was viewed by some as an act of desperate need as some critics states he also joined and released a video on Tik Tok – the most used app now – to reach a bigger audience. The app pushed artistic director Parris Goebel, who has been in a long term collaboration with Justin Bieber, to announce a Challenge. Furthermore, on the 6th of January, Goebel dropped one of her beautiful choreographic creations and an official dance video for the song Yummy.

This is not Goebel’s first rodeo in the world of hip-hop dance having won the Royal Family Hip-Hop Worldwide Championship three times in a row with her crew, she has taken a stand in the world of dance. Her originality as a choreographer is shown in her perfectionism and attention to the smallest details in each embodied movement, making her highly recognized by many artists such as Ciara, Sam Smith and Rihanna, all of whom have worked with her before.

The Yummy dance video is one of many dances that turned into a challenge thanks to social media and the internet, but as a dance piece, it is an amazing concept. It starts with two-woman arguing on beauty standards while the rest of the female dancers are stretching for the dance performance. This piece not only represents an ensemble of women standing together and showing their bodies, it also demonstrates a group of individuals embodying feminine power.

The piece shows how dance can tackle political norms hidden behind the pleasing aesthetics. Having a range of 52 female dancers performing such physically demanding movements in a perfect synchronization is what makes this piece astonishing to watch.

The pink color that circles in the dance video is the theme of the song and fashion designer Dylan Richards and makeup artist and hair stylist Scott Osbourne Jr’s collaboration continued the theme well on the dancers themselves. The dress code is another component emphasizing the power of this pro-female dance video. Choosing pink leads to reinforce empowerment as well as also touching on the issues that sexuality faces every day in society. As much as pink is the labelled colour that associates with girls, Goebel’s bold concept goes beyond it, reinforcing the embodiment of sensuality and sexiness and strength within woman. Cinematographer Kaname Onoyama concludes this astonishing piece by collaging beautiful clips from various angles, creating an essence of realism in a four-minute enjoyable video.

Goebel put her mark on the song Yummy by making a social movement which celebrates femininity in dance and by connecting a wide range of people, transmitting that joy and passion to any audience. By launching a challenge allowing everyone to be a part of, it allows everyone to enjoy the art form of dance.

About two months ago, this dance video was the new vibe, but now it is forgotten as new challenges arise every day. The power of social media is astonishing but at times forgets the recognition that people need and the actual passion behind those artistic forms. Might we ask what the new challenge will be for this month?

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