Video shows human dancers in Russia, not 'robots in Shanghai Disneyland'

·2 min read

A video has been viewed thousands of times on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter alongside a claim it shows lifelike robots performing a classical dance in China's Shanghai Disneyland theme park. The claim is false: the video features human dancers, and the clip was filmed in Moscow, Russia. AFP did not find any reference to a show with robot dancers on the Shanghai Disneyland website.

The video was shared here by an India-based Facebook user on March 11.

The 49-second clip shows a man and woman dancing while spectators watch and film on their phones.

The post's caption states in part: "The classical dance is being performed at Disneyland in Shanghai. These two are not human dancers, but two Chinese-made robots.

"The duration of the dance is only five minutes. But the waiting time to buy a ticket to watch this dance is 4 hours. The ticket price to watch this dance is 499 yuan, which is equivalent to 75 dollars."

Screenshot of the misleading Facebook post, taken on May 11, 2022.

The identical video was also viewed more than 13,000 times alongside a similar claim on Facebook here, here and here; on YouTube here; and in this Hindi-language Twitter post.

However, the video shows humans and not Chinese-made robots as the posts allege.

Keyword searches found a longer version of the video uploaded by Instagram user dj.don.corazon here on August 16, 2020.

"DJ Don Corazon. Bachata DJ and organiser @corazon.bachata Bachata Russia @bachata.russia," the user's profile reads.

Bachata is a danceable but often melancholy music genre previously associated with the poor of the Dominican Republic.

The caption of the post indicates the performance was filmed during the Bachata Stars Weekend event in Moscow on August 2020, and the dancers seen in the clip are Dima and Dilara, bachata dancers from Russia.

Below is a screenshot comparison between the video seen in the misleading post (L) and the video on Instagram (R):

Screenshot comparison of the video in the misleading post (L) and the video on Instagram (R)

Dilara, one of the two dancers seen in the video, also shared the identical clip on her Instagram account, crediting DJ Don Corazon, while the pair uploaded multiple videos showing the same performance taken from a different angle, including this clip on August 25, 2022,

The duo's other performances can be seen on their official website, YouTube, and VK channel.

AFP performed multiple keyword searches on the Shanghai Disneyland website and did not find any show featuring lifelike robot dancers in its listed attractions or entertainment options.

AFP has previously debunked a similar claim about "robot dancers in Shanghai" here and here.

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