City Journal: Everybody Get Footloose!

123 Party wants to warm the hearts of Bostonians, one dance move at a time.

Their sounds are pure Velveeta-caliber ’80s jams. Their shtick is Zoolander-esque. And the unabashed goal for renegade dance troupe 123 Party is to loosen up staid ol’ Boston by wildly encouraging, as they say, “a love for neon and love for dancing.”

Conceived a year ago, when drunken bar-hopping gave way to an impromptu dance party, the troupe has since performed dozens of unannounced shows in restaurants, on sidewalks, and in the Pru, where the rent-a-cops repeatedly kick them out. Despite the hassles—they were hauled to jail during the photo shoot for this story!—the trio is resolute. “We’re boosting morale all over the place,” says spiky-haired Mike Perlman, a.k.a. Fury.

And the spectacle-makers (the bearded one, Joseph Wight, goes by Sonic, and Alex Seligson is known as Turbo) swear they’re just getting started. They’ve begun taking a few paid gigs, and there’s even talk of brand extensions. “I’d love to expand to a Broadway-style show,” muses Perlman. “Blue Man? I don’t even know who they are anymore.”