a once in a lifetime event

Your 26-Step Aerobics Workout to David Byrne’s American Utopia

Why put on your mask to huff and puff in a sad indoors gym, when you could do this from the comfort of your own home instead?! Photo: David Lee/HBO

If 2020 has been everyone’s slovenly and boozy year from hell, David Byrne’s American Utopia is its proud antidote. The show, which ended its original Broadway run in February, is a monochromatic paradise for Byrne and his fellow performers: Everyone is untethered and barefoot, the songs are full of joy, and, of course, the dance moves are sublime. Choreographed by Annie-B Parson, her goal was for the audience to walk away realizing that dance matters, and how, just like Talking Heads standards, it can easily become a part of their memory. “It was an amazing creation for this piece. It has a minimalist aesthetic but it’s somehow very warm,” Parson told Vulture last year. “David really is one of the great citizen artists of our time. It’s for real with him. It’s cool to be with someone who cares that much for the world.”

A film adaptation of American Utopia, directed by Byrne’s fellow “art brother” Spike Lee, will begin streaming on HBO platforms on October 17. In lieu of putting on your mask to huff and puff in a sad indoors gym, Vulture has created this 26-step GIF workout, taken directly from the show, that you can do from the comfort of your own home. You may not burn more than 75–100 calories, but who cares. You only have one lifetime anyway.

Step 1: If you can’t get your own brain, store-bought dumbbells are fine.

Step 2: Give your glutes some love.

Step 3: The checkerboard.

Step 4: A shimmy there, a shake here.

Step 5: Half-capacity jumping jacks.

Step 6: The clapper.

Step 7: The martini shake boogie.

Step 8: The arm-chop hoedown!

Step 9: Synchronized power walking.

Step 10: And I — oop!

Step 11: Waddle around a li’l.

Step 12: Try an electric slide.

Step 13: The imaginary tightrope.

Step 14: Fold those boxes.

Step 15: Wander around disoriented.

Step 16: Continue to wander around disoriented.

Step 17: Balance practice.

Step 18: Bring those dumbbells back.

Step 19: Raise the roof, respectfully.

Step 20: Embrace your inner dream ballet.

Step 21: Form that rhombus!

Step 22: Wiggle those feet out.

Step 23: Honestly, just dance with yourself for a few minutes.

Step 24: The great curve.

Step 25: Just … watch your corners carefully here.

Step 26: March in place triumphantly. You’re done!

Your 26-Step Workout to David Byrne’s American Utopia