Adam Carpenter is lord of the dance – at least, on Instagram. Every day for the past eight months, the LA-based actor and filmmaker creates and posts a video of himself dancing to his 45,000-follower strong fanbase on @adamscarpenters. He does everything from inventive Springsteen-soundtracked stop motion clips to hilarious visual jokes, but he also has time for a nice-ass body roll. If you ever thought Instagram was a time suck to begin with, prepare to be slurped into Carpenter's vortex. The man himself will be taking over our Instagram account today at @dazedmagazine, so watch out for his shimmying there. Below the cut, he speaks to Dazed about the premiere of his Visionary film with Convoy Studio, HIPS, and why all he wants out of this whole dance jig is a wife.
Dazed: Where did you get the idea for HIPS?
Adam Carpenter: The last time I was home in North Carolina, I made a few dances with my grandparents. They obviously had a lot of movement restrictions but their joy and expressiveness was infectious. I was selfishly looking for more of the feeling they gave me. Leading a dance class at a retirement home seemed like the easiest way to satisfy my desire for that old people boogie.
How did you even film HIPS? Did you just walk into a retirement home and set up a dance class?
Adam Carpenter: I met with the activities director and some of the residents at the Emeritus retirement community and asked if they were interested in wiggling with me. They had a little time between a mahjong tournament and lunch so I got in my dancing gear and we had a 45-minute dance party while two of my friends filmed.
Were the residents of the home receptive to your dance moves?
Adam Carpenter: They were more than receptive. They were pushing me to go farther. I was amazed by how quickly they picked up the moves and how willing they were to get weird. One particularly tiny and adorable Chinese lady grabbed my gold unitard while we were dancing and said, “So beautiful, so beautiful.” I wish she was talking about my body, but I think she was more interested in my apparel. After our little duet, I couldn’t stop smiling for twenty minutes.
You've become known as Instagram's dance master. How long have you been doing a daily dance and how did you come up with the concept?
Adam Carpenter: I’ve been making a video every day since the middle of last October. It think i’m up to about 250 videos at this point. I don’t know if you can call daily dance a concept – dancing has always been a compulsive element of my personality and Instagram provided a wonderful container with its 15-second video limit. I just fill the container each day and get overpaid in encouraging comments from those people kind enough to follow me.
Have you basically lost any and all self-consciousness when it comes to dancing in public by now?
Adam Carpenter: I don’t think can lose all self-consciousness while wearing a skin-tight bodysuit in the middle of a grocery store but I get over the fear by trusting that the slight embarrassment is worth the “artistic” payoff.
Can you give me some dance tips?
Adam Carpenter: Sure. Now? My biggest tip is to ignore that voice that says “I can’t dance”. If the music is speaking to you, listen. Your body will respond to the magic of the rhythm. Knowing moves doesn’t make you a dancer – dancing (whatever it looks like) makes you a dancer.
I read somewhere that you were inspired to come up with your Instagram daily dances in order to find a wife. Have you succeeded yet?
Adam Carpenter: Haha, that was a joke, an attempt at a humorous comment, intended to amuse… But now that i thoroughly consider it, I don’t think I will be able to take any satisfaction in any accomplishment until this Instagram account nets me a life-mate. I am currently sans wife.