Russell Horning is an American dancer and social media personality. Also known by the nickname the ‘Backpack Kid’, he is popular for his amazing and funny dance moves which he performs while having a backpack on his back. Incredibly popular on Instagram, he has become one of the most recognizable social media personalities around Atlanta. Horning was just a normal high school student who occasionally posted on social media until the day Rihanna first reposted his dance on Instagram, garnering him a fan club overnight. Currently, with over 2.2 million followers on the social media platform, he’s ruling over Instagram like a celebrity and totally enjoying the experience! He has released two original tracks, ‘2 Litt’ and ‘Flossin,’ and plans to join the music industry one day. Talking of his personal life, he was born in Lawrenceville, Georgia, and grew up with his younger sister. A socially conscious person, he is a strong criticizer of racism. He also believes that dancing is one medium to make the world a better place as it connects people of different races.
Rise to Stardom
Russell Horning was just a regular child until he started creating and posting videos of himself dancing in his bedroom that quickly went viral. His signature dance style, called “Flossing,” is his claim to fame. In this dance move, Horning swiftly swings his arms while shaking his booty and maintaining a stone-faced glare, carrying his backpack of course!
Russell Horning has been active on the social media since 2014 with his Instagram profile originally registered as Majestic Cat Lover. The following year, he got his first big break when another Instagram user who had hundreds of thousands of subscribers tagged him in a video. This ultimately led to a steep hike in the number of Horning’s followers in no time. Then in 2016, one of his dance videos went viral, making him quite popular.
In May 2017, Horning’s fame reached further heights when he was invited by Katy Perry to perform on the ‘Saturday Night Live’ show. In the show, he showcased his brilliant dance moves, impressing the viewers. He later also starred in the singer’s music video for the single ‘Swish Swish.’ Also that year, Horning’s fancy dance moves were mimicked by NFL player Mack Hollins during a Philadelphia 76ers game. His current Instagram account is in the name of “thebackpackkid” and it has more than 2.2 million followers.
Russell Horning has also appeared in music videos by the dance duo Ayo & Teo and Blac Youngsta. Following his meteoric rise to stardom, the backpack kid has also scored a number of commercials for many renowned brands. He shot a promotional tape for the Georgia Swarm Lacrosse team and also attended one of their games in June 2017. In addition, he did an advertisement for Checkers to support their $1 Fries campaign. Currently, Horning is planning to design backpacks and other items, such as socks, caps, hoodies, and T-shirts.
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The Secret behind the Name the 'Backpack Kid'
According to Russell Horning, one of his friends had a cool backpack that looked great on him. Horning wanted the backpack too as he liked it very much. So, he started dancing with the backpack on. This is how he came to be known as the “Backpack Kid!” People often wonder what all items he actually carries in his backpack. Russell carries a water bottle, a charger, a GOATcase, his wallet, and a few fidget spinners in his backpack.
Russell Horning was born on December 19, 2001 in Lawrenceville, Georgia, the USA to Anita Redd and her husband. He has a younger sister whose name is Jill. He is good friends with a number of fellow star dancers including Benny Imprint and Mateo Bowles.