Dad Dancing sparks theme park sensation

building hype for Thorpe Park's Island Beats

Case Study Film;


The Brief;

Thorpe Resort brought us on board for their Summer-long music festival Island Beats – a series of gigs featuring top pop acts like Little Mix and The Vamps taking place throughout July and August.

As well as running a robust press office around the events, including talent interviews and press accreditation, we knew there was scope for a creative campaign to bring Isalnd Beats to the masses, and create a cultural talking point.

We knew that artist support would be limited, and that we’d need to come up with something that didn’t rely on the acts playing.


Our Idea;

Due to the young, pre-teen/teenage demographic of attendees, we knew that there were likely to be plenty of parents chaperoning their kids at the gigs - a potential source of family tension and teen angst.

This got us thinking… and as the Summer holidays timed perfectly with the start of the festival a campaign focussing on embarrassing parents – in particularly those prone to a bit of dad dancing – was an interesting starting point.


The Campaign;

We engaged a psychologist who specialised in inter-generational relationships to lead some research that would scientifically reveal for the first time exactly why parents are so embarrassing.  

The study polled 2,000 parents to find out what were the things that made their kids cringe - with Dad/Mum dancing revealed as the number one reason behind for EPS – Embarrassing Parents Syndrome.

 To tie EPS back to the festival and attempt to mitigate its effects, we created special dad dancing areas at the gigs where parents could dance like no one was watching.

One local dad in particular enjoyed himself so much during trials of the areas, he became an international viral sensation.

After the huge response to the video he returned to the resort to teach other parents how to bust his moves.

We also released some advice to parents and children from our psychologist, and created a quiz that could reveal the presence of EPS.


The Results;

Over 200 pieces of coverage for the study and the dad dancing viral video in national print, online and broadcast – and the video even made it over the pond on to Fox and ESPN.

 Social media in particular went wild for the dad dancer- with global superstar Britney Spears posting the video on her Facebook page and the video getting over five million views.