There is an energetic street corner dancer on Detroit’s eastside. He’s been out there on the street perfecting his style and smooth dance moves for a long time. Darius is his name, and he goes by Dazzlle. On most days he can be seen at the corner of East Warren Avenue and Cadieux Road doing his thing. On occasion, he can also be spotted at other high traffic intersections on the eastside.
I see him dancing year around, generally in street clothes, but he tends to dress accordingly for particular holidays. On St. Patrick’s Day he’s decked out as an Irishman. For the Fourth of July, he’s usually dressed as the Statue of Liberty. During the Christmas Season he dressed as Santa.
No matter the outfit, the man has some pretty good dance moves. Dazzlle can do some amazing splits on the sidewalk where he slides down, quickly pops up, adjusts his pants and does a couple of fast spins, all in a matter in seconds. In many ways, he has the swagger of Elvis and the high-energy, quick body movements and stop actions of Michael Jackson.
“I’ve been dancing on the streets for over 5 years.” he said. “I like this corner, this is where my fans are,” he said motioning toward the passing cars and trucks rolling down East Warren, some blowing their horns at him. Dazzlle is in his early twenties, and this is what he does for a living.
“Gotta go out and do it man. This is how I make money,” he said while pointing to a coffee can where people can drop in money. Dazzlle said he dances at parties and someday he hopes to be a successful dancer and eventually offer dance classes.
Take a look at Dazzlle’s Dancing Santa routine on YouTube from a year or so ago. It will give you a good idea what he does on that eastside Detroit street corner.