April 20, 2011 / 7:20 PM / 9 years ago

Russia's Medvedev shows off "dated" dance moves

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Moving to the beat of 1990s pop hit “American Boy,” Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s stiff dance moves became an immediate viral hit on YouTube on Wednesday.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev smiles during a visit to a drug rehabilitation centre in the Siberian city of Irkutsk April 18, 2011. REUTERS/Mikhail Klimentyev/RIA Novosti/Kremlin

Sporting a form-fitting silver jacket and open collar, Medvedev somewhat awkwardly wiggles his hips and kicks up his heels with other party guests in the half-minute clip posted late on Tuesday.

The performance attracted mixed but plentiful reactions from Russians, with nearly 300 comments only hours after it was posted.

“It looks like Medvedev’s swallowed a stick,” one viewer commented.

“You dance like my father!” twitter user Stacey Uliss wrote on Medvedev’s page, to which the tech-savvy, 45-year-old president promptly posted a good-natured response.

“Age-wise that seems to be the case,” he tweeted, admitting the tune and his dance moves were dated.

“We were partying at a meeting with (former) classmates a year ago. The dances/music are still those from the past.”

The Russian pop song that set him grooving topped charts in 1990 when its lyrics about escaping with a foreigner struck a chord amid the economic hardship and uncertainty accompanying the collapse of the Soviet Union.

An avid Twitter user, Medvedev is seen as more liberal and Western-leaning than his mentor and current prime minister, Vladimir Putin, a former KGB officer who steered him into the country’s top job in 2008.

Kremlin spokeswoman Natalya Timakova said the video had probably been posted by a caterer at the party, saying it showed an unfortunate lack of respect for privacy.

Putin, who could not run for a third term as president after his 2000-2008 rule, is still seen by most Russians as the man pulling the strings.

He has not ruled out a bid to return to the Kremlin in the March 2012 election, saying he will decide with Medvedev which of the two will stand as candidate.

Writing by Alissa de Carbonnel, editing by Paul Casciato and Tim Pearce

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