WEST HARTFORD – He’s got coordination, a good memory, and a winning smile. Those qualities got Michael River Jr. a lot of attention, after a night at home in early May.
“So, I was sitting in my living room, painting my toenails and he was like, ‘Mom, can I please take your phone?'” laughs mom Francheska Terrero. “My daughter was like, ‘What is Mike doing?’ and I said, ‘Please check on him, my toenails are drying.'”
She interrupted the 5-year-old killing the Natasha Bedingfield dance challenge, a remix of her song Unwritten, choreographed by dancer Rony Boy.
“I just remembered it,” says the boy. “When I do the moves like this one, shaking my legs, I like it!”
He set-up the phone, performed the routine and chose a cool filter, all on his own.
“When I saw the video, I was amazed,” says dad Michael Sr. “His energy in this video was just very different.”
The family posted it everywhere and, yup, it went viral.
“It made me feel like so happy and I smiled,” says little Mike.
Nearly 5.3 million views on Twitter, 1.5 million on Facebook and 500,000 on Instagram. Followers on Tik Tok skyrocketed.
“He loves to watch YouTube but instead of watching other kids play with toys, he watches dancing,” explains Michael.
But it’s been a roller coaster ride…Tik Tok deleting the video. Rivera Sr. believes it’s because the boy wasn’t wearing a shirt. Then Bedingfield herself posting the video on her Instagram page with a message, “OMG and I can’t even nail this dance yet.”
Mike is just a kid who loves baseball and recess but MikeNice is a social sensation who vows to keep wow-ing the virtual crowds.
“It was a good adventure, a good experience,” says Michael Sr. “We get so many compliments. It’s amazing.”