Capital Cities not only highlights the transformation of dance throughout the past century in their celebratory music video for "Safe And Sound," the rising pop duo also pays tribute to one of the most iconic theatres in downtown Los Angeles. The newly-restored Los Angeles Theatre is the set and site for the the group's video that includes dazzling work from choreographer Mandy Moore who worked with the duo of Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian on some very detailed dance moves. The video was directed by Motion Theory's Grady Hall who earlier also directed videos for Katy Perry, Weezer and Modest Mouse.
During dance rehearsals, Sebu suffered a sprained ankle that he wrapped up tightly for the actual video shoot, taking to heart the no pain/no gain axiom. Moore, who received an Emmy nomination for So You Think You Can Dance and was the choreographer for Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper in the Oscar-winning Silver Linings Playbook, recruited dozens of professional dancers to join Capital Cities in the shoot.
Hall and his team augmented those ranks by pulling people off the Venice boardwalk and out of dance clubs and then blending all the participants seamlessly with archival film footage to create a dance mash-up that spans the centuries
More than 40 dance styles – from Burning Man, the Electric Boogaloo and water ballet to Kazatsky (the Russian kick dance), the Charleston and roller disco – are represented in the three-minute clip. "We really strived to show the basic idea of dance as a timeless celebration that expresses and re-mixes itself over the decades," Grady Hall explains in a press release."Part of that was working with the dancers to go into the middle of the circle and lay down their 'power moves' – i.e., those jaw-droppingly big moves that take years to perfect, and only about a second to pull off."
He adds, "I love that we immortalized some of those. But also, we wanted to create the sense that the song itself was inspiring a mash-up of styles so that the swing dancers were break dancing, the B-Boys were tap dancing, and Ryan and Sebu were inspiring the dance with their performance – which is kind of the way it is at their live shows, too."
The result is an impressive debut video that is the perfect set up to the release of Capitol Cities' highly-anticipated LP, entitled "In A Tidal Wave Of Mystery," on June 11 (Capitol Records/CMS/Universal).
Capitol Cities "Safe And Sound"
Director: Grady Hall
Producer: Buddy Enright
Director of Photography: Shawn King
Production Designer: Terri Whittaker