As the Queen of Pop, Madonna‘s influence is far-reaching and has the power to change the world; she sang herself, “Music makes the people come together.” For many people in 1990, she did: her hit single “Vogue” became a movement, and she introduced millions of people to something most had no idea about.

‘Vogue’ didn’t originate with Madonna

Madonna’s hit song refers to the vogue dance style, which was created by LGBTQ dancers of color in New York City’s ballroom scene. Willi Ninja is beloved by many as the Grandfather of Vogue, and audiences everywhere got an inside look into this community in the 1991 documentary Paris is Burning.

Vogue typically consists of five elements: hand performance, floor performance, catwalk, duckwalk, and spins and dips (often mistakenly referred to as “death drops”).

HBO Max’s series Legendary is TV’s first competition show dedicated to vogue, and features several houses from the ballroom scene around the world. Coincidentally, one of the houses featured was the House of Ninja, whom judge Leiomy Maldonado said “Willi would be so proud of.”

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