The dance has inspired flash mobs over the years, some of which the actor has participated in. He also surprised viewers (and the audience) when he added the dance to his routine during an appearance on “Dancing with the Stars” last year, where he won 1st place for his overall performance on the season.
“I played a character that was as far from myself as possible. They would have to bring me a CD and some articles for me to read up on what the character liked, because I had never heard of Tom Jones. I didn’t know Barry Manilow. These weren’t people that I grew up with or experienced as a teenager. I grew up in the Bronx; I was a hip-hop kid. The Carlton Dance was created when it said in the script: ‘Carlton dances.’ It was never even intended to be funny; it was just that he was dancing. The dance is ultimately Courtney Cox in the Bruce Springsteen video ‘Dancing in the Dark’; that’s the basis. Or in Eddie Murphy’s ‘Delirious’ video, ‘The White Man Dance’ as he called it. And I said, ‘That is the corniest dance on the planet that I know of, so why don’t I do that?’
His creative inspiration certainly paid off. The “Carlton Dance” remains a pop culture favorite and cherished ’90s relic.
Alfonso currently hosts “Unwrapped 2.0” on the Cooking Channel, and he will take over as host of the 26th season of “America’s Funniest Home Videos” this fall on Sundays 7/6c on ABC.