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The Dancer's Spotlight: Raffy!

Each month we'll be highlighting a new Dance Central fan in the Dancer’s Spotlight! These pieces will give us a chance to recognize some of our most dedicated and inspiring Dance Central community members, and give you a chance to meet your fellow dancers! We’ll talk with cosplayers, Fitness Challenge participants, artists, and more, so check back each month to see whose turn it is in the Spotlight!


My name is Raffy and I make Dance Central splitscreen gameplay videos! I go by RiffraffDC online on Facebook and Twitter , and my YouTube channel is riffraff67. I live in Vancouver, Canada, the land of maple syrup, politeness, and the occasional hockey game riot. When I'm not dancing I go snowboarding, bike riding, running, and play video games. I’m a tech news and science junkie and love reading about new trends and findings. I’m a big hip-hop dance fan too Dance Central has kept me dancing, so it's become a really important part of my life! Seeing Dance Central being demoed on stage back at E3 2010 was like a wish being granted. There it was: A video game... that had real dance routines... that required you to actually dance... that didn't make me feel like I was Jazzercizing. I was like "Shut up and take my money!" And don't even get me started on how Dance Central's been able to replace my cardio workouts on the days when I can't get to the gym or go outside because of crappy weather or plain old laziness!

With Dance Central 3 credits pixel-artist and dedicated cos-player David Nguyen. Photo courtesy of TJ Niu.


As far as I can think back I've loved to dance. It's always felt natural to me. However, any "training" I've had has been through attending drop-in hip-hop classes at dance studios back when I was living in San Francisco. A friend from work several years ago invited me to try out a class with her, just for the heck of it. But by the time the class wrapped I knew I was hooked! I showed up for classes nearly every day (and twice some days) and tried out a slew of dance teachers to experience their varying styles of dance. That lasted for about a year, and then work and other interests saw my attendance drop to a class or two every other week. But it was always at the back on my mind.

Dancing has always been a part of who I am. I'm one of those weirdos who almost never seems to be able to stay still whenever I hear music, and it doesn't matter where I am either. I could be in line at the bank, sitting at my desk at work, on the treadmill at the gym; if I'm hearing music my body's almost always moving to the beat. My commutes to and from work always seem to turn street corners and idle time on the train platform into spontaneous practice sessions for practicing hand tuts, isos, and that one tricky move I can never seem to get in the latest Dance Central DLC.

With fellow DC fans Claire and David and Community Manager Annette. Photo courtesy of TJ Niu.


I have to give props to MightyMeCreative for kick-starting the trend! Seeing her earliest splitscreen videos was what definitely encouraged me to start making my own.

Putting my first video up on YouTube was purely about throwing my hat into the ring. I had no idea how people would react to my videos, and I was curious to see what people would have to say, but I was also freaked out at what negative remarks I would have to endure. It was an experiment, I figured, one that I could easily end by deleting the video. Thank goodness people actually had good things to say instead!Making the videos is about 90% rehearsal, retries, and fuming at myself to "stop screwing around and get it right!” The rest is editing the video’s pieces together and putting a nice polish on it. I'm kind of particular with details and it bothers me when I make mistakes that come across as sloppy or inauthentic, and that applies to both my work and to dance.

My play space only looks pristine! There’s almost always a sock or a tossed pair of shorts just out of frame! It’s really more about keeping my dance space as open as possible. I will admit that Dance Central is the first and only video game I’ve ever willingly rearranged my living room for in order to play optimally!

With the whole Harmonix Community crew at PAX Prime 2012.


  • “Whip It” – Nicki Minaj (DLC)– My favorite Marcos Aguirre choreography to date, this routine had so many good fresh sequences that paired up really well with the music.

  • “Days Go By”–Dirty Vegas (DC) – While Ricardo Foster Jr.’s routine for “Lights” is effectively the amped up version, this still has the distinction of being one of the first routines with popping and locking in Dance Central.

  • “What’s My Name” -Rihanna (DLC) – Frenchy Hernandez’s choreo for this Rihanna track was right on the money and is one of my all-time favorite chorus section sequences in Dance Central.

  • “Firework” –Katy Perry (DC3) – Chanel Thompson’s choreography is always fun, explosive and energetic, and I generally love all her work, but it’s the smaller lyrical moments in this routine that really did it for me.

  • “Don’t Touch Me (Throw Da Water On ‘Em)” –Busta Rhymes (DLC) – This track—and routine by Devin Woolridge—goes real hard! This routine lets me burn off work-related pent up aggression!

  • “You Make Me Feel… “ –Cobra Starship ft. Sabi (DC3) – This routine completely encapsulated the level of awesome that Dance Central reached in the franchise, as well as highlighted totally unexpected choreo from Torey Nelson.

  • “Only Girl (In The World)” -Rihanna (DLC) – Spikey’s routine has the distinction of being the first to make me question my ability to pick up and learn choreography, which is a good thing since I’ve only gotten better at both since!

  • “Grenade” –Bruno Mars (DC2) – Along with “Take Care”, it’s always a welcome surprise when slower and more emotional tracks and routines make it into Dance Central’s roster. This routine blew my mind from the get-go.

  • “I Wish For You” --EXILE (DC2) – I didn’t even know about EXILE until I heard it in Dance Central 2, but Kunle Oladehin’s spot-on choreography helped illustrate this song’s boy band background.

  • “Bass Down Low” –Dev (DC3) – My knee joints are still hurting after my first playthrough of this routine at PAX! Nick DeMoura’s routine for this track really challenged the physicality of lots of Dance Central fans.


    A lot of people ask how they can become better dancers and what I always say is to practice your butt off, and I really do mean by putting the hours into learning more and trying more things out. It's all about getting your body used to making the movements, and about getting your brain used to remembering how to create those movements. Take a dance class, watch other dancers on YouTube, take in everything you can to find out more about what it takes to become a great dancer.

    But what’s even more important is to just have fun! Dancing is all about letting your emotions out and expressing yourself in your own unique way. If you’re doing it for fun first and a score second, then in my opinion you’re doing it right.

    Thanks to Harmonix and the Dance Central crew for letting me do this feature!

    Check back with us the first week of each month to see who's turn it is in the Dancer's Spotlight! Think you know someone who deserves their moment? Drop us a line in the forums!