Throwback Footage: Paula Abdul Teaches Janet Jackson How To Dance

Published: Saturday 8th Oct 2011 by David

Now one of television’s most recognizable royals, many could be forgiven for forgetting exactly how and why Paula Abdul initially rose to fame.

Spotted by members of The Jackson band whilst performing as a cheerleader at a Los Angeles Lakers game, she was signed onto choreograph the video for the single ‘Torture‘ .

Later on, she went onto create a number of  choreographed sequences for both stage and screen, working on the movies ‘Coming To America’ and ‘Karate Kid III’.

Enjoying Billboard #1s with her own singles ‘Rush Rush‘ , ‘Opposites Attracts‘ and ‘Forever Your Girl‘, there are some who would say that Abdul’s impact on Pop culture is both underrated and heavily overlooked.

Now peep this Throwback Footage of her teaching Janet Jackson the moves to ‘When I Think Of You‘ below…

And for the fans:

Your thoughts?

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  1. 77Abe77 October 4, 2011

    she certainly did well back then.

  2. Lola October 4, 2011

    Paula’s A Better Dancer Than Judge. I Couldn’t Stand Her On American Idol. I Don’t Really Like Paula Or Janet But This Is Pretty Cool!

  3. Janet4Ever October 4, 2011

    OMG! Please retitle this. Paula is teaching Janet choreography, not how to dance!! Janet was dancing on Fame well before she met Paula.

  4. Jamaican BOuy October 4, 2011

    WOW!!! Thts sure no simple one two step!! Girl did your thing! Its sad how Award Show performances are just not spectacular as they were bck then……………..

  5. nate October 4, 2011

    What a misleading title. Paula never taught Janet how to dance. She taught her dance routines for the Control album. Janet then dropped her and moved on to a another choreographer with the next album..

    Though Paula was the s*** back in the day!! I still love Cold Hearted, and Straight Up. Great videos too

  6. October 4, 2011

    Paula is not teaching Janet how to dance; She is teaching her choreography for the video. Janet was dancing since she was a child on the Jackson variety show.

  7. OsO October 4, 2011

    Janet has always known how to dance…Paula was nothing more than a choreographer.

    THAT FLOP JUICE flops again…

  8. Yellow Gorillah October 4, 2011

    I hate it when people try act like Paula Taught Janet how to dance. Janet is a natural dancer she is a JACKSON liike come on. Paula Taught janet dance moves and no shade she did not teach her the most icon i.e Rhythm Nation, If but Nasty was cute Paula was a GREAT dancer she is the only one that comes close to janet

  9. Popeater October 4, 2011

    Please change this to “Paula teaches Janet a dance routine”. Janet’s most popular choreography /dance routines were after the Control album anyways.

    She’s a great dancer, but she did NOT teach Janet how to dance. Janet worked wtih Debbie Allen before she worked with Paula. Janet would not be known as one of the best entertainers of all time if she was “taught” how to dance. She’s a natural dancer.

    Don’t get me wrong, Paula was cool back in the day.

  10. AHLIYON October 4, 2011

    The Title is misleading, UM JANET been knew how to dance, HELLO! She a JACKSON on top of that. Have u not seen FAME?

  11. Magicpaint October 4, 2011

    Please. That is choreographing, not teaching ffs.

  12. bpleasebelieve October 4, 2011


  13. bey’knight October 4, 2011

    whats wrong with yall, does everybody have to say the same thing? i think that point has been well established after the 3rd, 4th comment geez.

    anywho i cant watch it im in college now, was hoping for some potent comments, guess i hoped too much

  14. Teflon Boy October 4, 2011

    @Bey’Knight…., LOOOOL ROTF I kno right, what is with these people?!

  15. KD October 4, 2011

    Please change the title it’s misleading, you know damn well that white people can’t dance.
    Please change the title it’s misleading, you know damn well that Janet knew how to dance while she was still in the uterus.
    Please change the title it’s misleading, you know damn well that Janet taught Michael and the rest of the world how to dance.
    Please change the title …

    as Bey’Knight said we get it…the way in which it is articulated doesn’t matter. Janet knew how to dance, Paula did not teach her. Let’s move it along.

  16. ASAP (As Sincere As Possible) October 4, 2011

    Paula was an amazing dancer.I’m not that familiar with her music, but she had stage presence and a lot of sass during her routines.She looked effortless and I appreciate that!And that 2nd video reminds me of when awards shows were actually good and worth of watching.Interesting and original.Too bad I wasn’t even born there and I can only find that on YouTube now…

    Anyway, after Aaliyah’s passing, we only have 1 female in the new generation who COULD reach that, but she’s so FAR from that point.If she could get a better choreographer and stop focusing on hip hop choreo and adjust her capabilities to more styles of dancing, she could slay.I’m hoping that this certain female’s upcoming album will be her ‘Control’!

  17. I.D. October 4, 2011

    As Janet once said, “Paula taught me moves, not how to dance”. ‘Nuff said.


    This is TALENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Janet>>>>>>>>BLEACHonce 🙂

  19. tae October 4, 2011

    Yes ASAP speak the truth she needs to leave Jamaica along and branch out maybe get Laurie Ann or someone fresh cause there is a huge lane open just waiting to be filled and as of now only CIARA can fill it!!

  20. irene46 October 4, 2011

    i thought i was going to have to put this paula teaching janet in check. you all beat me to it!

    @ kd…

    since there’s a difference between teaching someone to dance and teaching choreography, the way this was articulated certainly does matter!

  21. SHESDUMB IS TIRED OF THE BS October 4, 2011


  22. KAT DELUNA FAN October 4, 2011



  23. DUNKFAN October 4, 2011

    Please, Janet can out dance Paula any day.

  24. TheDimplePuppet October 4, 2011

    Janet! Janet! Janet! 🙂

  25. tha_truth21 October 4, 2011

    Beyonce GaGa or any other of your favs could never pull of a performance of that caliber….Paula was the QUEEN on that dance floor….The intricacy of that was MIND BLOWING…GENIUS!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. CHillin October 4, 2011

    @ bpleasebelieve are you MAD!!!! Paula tied with Beyonce?! u must be 14 years old..

  27. Robier October 4, 2011

    Her 1990 performance >>>>>> 98 % of this s*** thats supposedly so great today.

  28. bpleasebelieve October 4, 2011


    Actually I was trying to be nice. LOL just because Paula is a good technical dancer does not make her a better dancer than Beyonce. And just because Beyonce can shake the s*&% out of her body a million times over Paula, does not make her a better dancer than Paula… Is that the point you were trying to make? I believe that both women are great but neither impresses me to the point where I’m like their the greatest. Janet has style, she hits those accents, is technically great and more street than any of them. You see left when she goes right: Catch Up! Again these are my opinions…Last thing no I’m legal, but yes I still get carded.

  29. KG85 October 4, 2011

    No Paula didn’t teach Janet to dance but you also have to give credit where credit is due. Before Paula worked with Janet, Janet had two albums that both flopped. After working with Paula is when Janet became the Janet that we know and love today.

    On top of that, after working with Janet Paula went on to put out her own Solo albums both breaking world wide records and producing several number 1 hits. She also beat Janet for just about every award they were nominated against each other with. Feel free to look on youtube.

    I’m not saying Janet isn’t great because she is a legend in her own right but so is Paula. Paula is the one who decided to step back from the music industry for a while but you can see her work featured on countless movies getting her emmys and other amazing awards.

    Its a shame that two women can’t both be praised. Sadly society sees the need to put one down to lift the other up. That is pathetic.

  30. Miss Pearl October 4, 2011

    Would there be outrage if this was a video of Beyonce being taught choreography and the title said someone was teaching her how to dance? By the time Paula came along, Janet had been in the business 15 years already – her brother was Michael Jackson – Paula taught her the choreographed steps for a specific performance.

    Dancing was in her already.

  31. nice_gurl October 5, 2011

    Never knew Paula was that good. I wasn’t even born then haha.

  32. HoldUp! October 5, 2011

    @KG85. Paula had nothing to do with the success of Janet’s Control album. She choreographed 3 videos (What have you done for me Lately, Nasty, and When I think of You). The video that is most recognized for choreography is the Pleasure Principle, which Paula had nothing to do with. So sit down!!

    Paula had two albums that did well. Paula also was sued using someone else vocals on her song Straight Up. How about you look that up? Paula is cool, great dancer/choreographer, but she in not on Janet’s level. The only reason why she is in the headlines today is for judging reality shows and possibly being on prescription drugs.


  33. Paulafan4yrs October 5, 2011

    @HOLDUP Paula also choreographed the Control video for Janet. Yes, there was a lawsuit, but against the record company, not Paula, and the chick LOST. It wasn’t for Straight Up either, it was I Need You and Opposites Attract that were the songs in question. And that girl has never been heard from again. I’ve always been a Janet fan too, but not nearly as much as I love Paula. If it wasn’t for all the medical issues she had/has, I truely believe she would’ve been able to stick around in music more than she did.

  34. Troy October 7, 2011

    @TEFLONGIRL – Ain’t nothing wrong with these people accept for the fact that they love, like, admire Janet and are voicing their opinion…Your issue is that its not about beYAWNcy and I have no idea why anyone would even put beYAWNcy in the same sentence as Miss Jackson, as Miss Jackson has iconic videos with memorable choreography that is not copied, unlike beYAWNcy who stole the single ladies routine and tried to act like it was her idea, until she got called on it by two different interviewers who pointed it out on television that it was Bob Fosses routine. She later started to use the phrase “I was Inspired by” to cover up the fact that the b**** is the biggest copy cat of all time. There is nothing original about the W****…and I don’t consider pole dancing in a routine dancing, a form of dance, maybe but when you do stripper moves or old school dances to try and pass off the fact that you can’t really dance then that’s a whole different story. Janet is original, learns choreography and adds her own signature substance to the dance. She has been performing for over 3 decades, as an actress, singer, overall performer, ICONIC/LEGENDARY. Not knocking Paula, i think she’s an amazing choreographer but she just taught her routines…in order to dance, you have to know “How” to dance…and choregraphy takes a lot of patience and imagination and that I give Paula kudos for. As far a vocals someone says that Janet is a better singer, well in my opinion Paula and Janet are on the same level of singing ability, they are not powerhouse vocalist like Whitney, Jennifer Hudson, Patti, or that tramp beYAWNcy (and she just yodels with all those runs and riffs), but the overall thing is their voice tone and quality, they are swan singers meaning they have beautiful tones, quality and clarity in their voices so they don’t need to be big vocalist and they aren’t just singers, they are singers and dancers which equals up to performers.

  35. Troy October 7, 2011

    @bey-Knight – Girl, you’re just mad because this article is not about that bleached down, fake barbie – beYAWNcy. Anytime someone says something positive about another female artist you sissies come running throwing beYAWNcy’s name up. Ain’t nobody checking for that w**** but a bunch of sissies trying to act and emulate her. beYAWNcy should not even be considered a performer because everything that she has ever managed to do in her pole dancing career is copy someone elses work and try to pass it off as her own. Go Check out on youtube: BEYONCE – The Biggest Copy Cat
    That’s just a start of all the people she had copied. Nothing she has done is original, she doesn’t even have more number one songs than some of the artist who came out after her Rhianna for one, nor Janet who has been out almost 4 decades performing. Yall can throw statistics around all day about beYAWNcy, the chick is a liars, a game player and only cares about one thing “being in the spotlight”…it’s not about quality with her, it’s about quantity, she wants more and do more while not looking at quality as being the key to being a legend or successful 40-50-even 100 years from now. All she wants to showcase is that she did this and she did that, she’s an attention w****. She had the makings of being the new Diana Ross, but she’s unglamourous, she lacks class. She could’ve even been considered the new Tina Turner, but she’s too copy cattish and raunchy and besides, Tina has already done Tina. So when u try and compare an Icon/Legend Diana, Janet, Tina to todays trash – beYAWNcy…Iconic, quality wins everytime. And for starters you and other sissies need to realize, beYAWNcys time is up she’s stolen every award she’s received, with the assistance of her daddy and she’s learned from his criminal ways how to be deceitful to her fans.

  36. KG85 October 7, 2011

    @Holdup! You are crazy if you think Pleasure Principle is the video that put Janet on the map. Like I said before Paula started doing choreography for Janet she wasn’t nearly as big.

    Janet recognized Paula’s talent and that is why she wanted to work with her. It’s a shame that Janet’s fans are not willing to recognize that talent as well.

  37. Lovely October 8, 2011

    Didn’t you all post this already?

  38. MISHKA October 8, 2011

    Already posted, Sam’s interns.

  39. commanderofthedancefloor October 8, 2011

    i think everyone is over reacting to the title of the post.

    if you are a janet stan then you know that she already knew how to dance, when i read the title i knew it was just paula teaching janet some dance routines.

  40. Salem October 8, 2011

    Damn, they had lipsinging back then? Just sayin’

  41. Jordan October 8, 2011

    Just wondering why you guys reposted this one…

  42. Jamie October 8, 2011

    Slow news day then?

  43. Chillin October 8, 2011

    Paula was a bad b****! Her movements were ridiculously perfection

  44. FaithwthNoRelgn October 8, 2011

    UMMMM this is OLD NEWS O_o !?!?!

  45. rihanna navy October 10, 2011


  46. te7221 February 29, 2012

    janet was dancin since the age of 5 on the carol burnett show and dinah shore show look how cute she isclick janet and randy doin donny and marie and the jackson variety show janet come from a family that danced all type of dancing then she was on another show then came good times different strokes fame an d i think 21 jump street she was dancing before paula was a cheer leader also click janet copycats janet inspires the world gracious janet click beyonce the biggest copycat 1.2.3. beyonce wears fake booty pad beyonce steals songs beyonce copies who run the world lookat the young and new artist following janet instead of beyonce who run the world their were 2 black females in the 80s whitney the voice and ms jackson the dancers the only female original artist beyonce and jay z overrated and illum whats with jay z video at the end the audience with devil signs up

  47. te7221 February 29, 2012

    and paula was a good dancer but janet was and still is an artistic dancer poses and arms were phenomeon she got awards for her dancing and has more than paula if you look at the 2 together look how laid back janet is in her pose and moves look at paula jjanet was more tom boyish wasnt scared of stunts like she is the only female to do a back flip (pleasure of principle)look at her copycats janet is not a hip hop dancers like ciara she is the 1st to bring sexyness and the 1st female to have artist back up dancers dancing in the style they are doin today click janet jackson to be inducted into the rock n roll hall of fame

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