Harry Styles' dancers say Grammys set malfunction nearly caused chaos
Harry Styles and a crew of dancers unexpectedly found themselves rotating the wrong way during a live performance at this year's Grammy Awards.
Before taking home the night's top honor, album of the year, for his 2022 record "Harry's House," Styles took to the stage midway through the awards show to perform the biggest hit off the album, "As It Was."
With nearly two billion streams on Spotify, the song dominated the charts after its May release and the popular (and Grammy-nominated) video features the former One Direction singer and a partner dancing atop a slow-spinning turntable.
In a nod to the video, Styles and 12 dancers practiced a routine meant to take place on a giant orbiting platform on the Grammys' stage. But the translation from rehearsal to real thing had nearly disastrous results.
According to an article published by Variety, two of Styles' backup dancers took to social media after the show, revealing that a malfunction caused the turntable to turn clockwise instead of counterclockwise as it had been rehearsed.
Variety reports that choreographer Dexter Da Rocha said in a since-deleted TikTok, "12 of us were on the turntable and we rehearsed for 10 days getting down these beautiful formations and sliding off the turntable … and Harry did such a good job integrating into it and had a beautiful duet."
TODAY reached out to Da Rocha for comment.
However, when it came time for the live performance, the turntable began spinning the wrong way. There was nothing the performers could do other than improvise in the moment – Styles included.
Another of Styles' backup dancers, Brandon Mathis, posted about the snafu on TikTok in a since-deleted video saying, per a captured video of the TikTok, "The moment the curtain opened and it was time to perform, our turntable started spinning in reverse – backward – freaking all of us out on live television and there was nothing we could do to stop it."
He continued by saying that after a week of "perfect" rehearsals, the technical malfunction required them to "troubleshoot" in real time and do the piece in reverse.
"Talk about professionalism," he said.
TODAY.com reached to Mathis for comment, but Mathis declined to be interviewed.
While Mathis' video is no longer available, keen-eyed TikTokers have posted close-ups of Styles at the beginning of the performance, closing his eyes in what appears to be frustration and rotating his finger potentially trying to alert technicians of the glitch.
After the Grammys, critics of Styles said that the "Watermelon Sugar" singer's performance was "lethargic." However, given the circumstances, Styles might have needed all his energy to stay steady during the mishap.
“Harry did his best to walk and reverse everything while he was singing and reverse his entire duet which is incredible,” Da Rocha said per Variety.
On his Instagram, Mathis posted about the performance writing, "From top to bottom this was a once in a life time experience ... not only is (Styles) an actual rockstar, he’s also a kick ass down to earth human being who truly cares about what he’s doing and who he’s doing it with."
Along with winning album of the year, Styles also picked up a statue for best pop vocal album, as well as nominations for record of the year, song of the year, best pop solo performance and best music video for "As It Was."
This article was originally published on TODAY.com