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CAIRO — It was a rare and subversive action in Saudi Arabia.

A 14-year-old is seen in a video dancing to the 1990s hit ‘‘Macarena’’ in the middle of a street in the Saudi city of Jiddah.

He’s wearing black headphones, a striped shirt, Nike shorts, baby blue crocs — and a wide, happy smile. The video has gone viral.

On Tuesday, Saudi authorities arrested the teen. His crime, according to Colonel Atti bin Attia Al-Qurashi, a police spokesman, is that the dancing was ‘‘a disruption of traffic and violation of public morality,’’ the government-linked Sabq news site reported.

The arrest comes at somewhat of a crossroads for the Sunni kingdom. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, 31, is trying to modernize the conservative society and make it less stifling culturally.


He has encouraged art and food festivals and live music concerts that have in the past been banned.

But the teen’s arrest underscores the strong traditional influences that still grip society in a nation where Western dancing and music is frowned upon.

Washington Post