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Show Us Your Hands: Inside EDM’s Gloving Craze

With their mesmerizing movements and entrancing light shows, glovers are becoming an EDM force

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If you've been to an EDM show in recent years, you've seen them: dancers waving light-equipped gloves in the faces of mesmerized ravers. What may look like a drug-induced lark is actually part of a budding international phenomenon, known to the rave community as "gloving." While a DJ performs on stage, a glover entertains the audience, donning illuminated gloves, moving his or her fingers in time to the beat and forming rapidly changing light patterns. Glovers' displays can be a show within a show, and the man largely responsible for gloving's spread is Brian Lim.

What follows is a break-down of Lim's business and the gloving craze at large, complete with accompanying videos. By Nicole Pajer

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Gloving’s Growth

Gloving is even moving out of the strict-EDM world. It's been featured on television shows like The Voice, America's Best Dance Crew and Shake it Up. Lim also established the International Gloving Championship, the world's "biggest and baddest" gloving competition, which he hosts at the Yost Theater in Orange County, California. The event brings the world's top glovers together and provides them with an arena to perform outside of raves. "We're going to be introducing team battles in gloving for the first time," says Lim."

In addition to the annual IGC, currently in its fourth year, Lim and his Emazing Lights colleagues are in the process of creating the first professional gloving team. Called the Light Theory, the team will consist of paid glovers who will perform at various events and EDM festivals. Lim also plans to have the team teach classes on gloving. He's also working to open EmazingLights/iHeartRaves stores across the country, with locations planned for Florida, New York and Illinois.

Despite the growth of the business, Lim remains committed to the idea of gloving as a creative expression. "With gloving," he says, "your imagination is the canvas and your hands are the paintbrush."

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