Google Doodle celebrates iconic dancer, choreographer Willi Ninja


New York: Google prepared a video doodle on Friday, June 9, in honour of William Roscoe Leake, popularly known as Willi Ninja, an American dancer and choreographer. Also known as the ‘Godfather of Voguing’, Willi Ninja paved the way for black LGBTQ+ portrayal and acceptance in the 1980s and 1990s. A celebrated performer made a significant contribution to society for the development of lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer people. He created ‘The Iconic House of Ninja,’which is still existing and carrying forward the aim and legacy of Willi Ninja.

Edited by Xander Opiyo, the Doodle video is prepared with original music by Vivacious and the illustration was given by Rob Gilliam. The video featured performers including Archie Burnett Ninja, Javier Madrid Ninja, Kiki Ninja, and Akiko Tokuoka aka KiT Ninja, the current members of the House of Ninja, dancing in celebration of Willi’s legacy.

The doodle was prepared to honour the release date of the documentary ‘Paris is Burning’. The documentary featuring Willi and the iconic House of Ninja was released in the US at the NewFest New York LGBT Film Festival on June 9, 1990.

The documentary showcased the unique dance style of Willi on a big screen and became a big success, providing exposure to the works of Willi Ninja.


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