Steppin’ Up Drill Team offers dance lessons

Haljit BasuljevicReporter

The smoothness in which the way the Steppin’ Up Drill Team demonstrated to spectators was not easy to emulate. As members of Phi Beta Sigma and the drill team lined up, they each began by clasping their own hands together, palms open, and as they raised their thighs one after another all you hear is a pair of resounding claps. Simple enough. Onto the next step. In a clock-like synchronicity, they dance into a series of windmill claps and stomps.

Before going any further, the whole room had already been surrounded by students who were nodding their head. After a first couple demonstrations, the teachers then invited anyone who wanted to learn the steps, saying that when done step by step it really isn’t that hard to learn. Part of the frustration in learning the steps came from the momentum shift some students felt, but couldn’t keep up with. The windmill had become exceptionally difficult if one were not precise.

Step Up Drill Team Dancer Alina Michelle, a senior and biology major, said the most frustrating part about teaching new students was trying to get them to be patient with the whole process as well as getting newcomers to perform in unison.

“Some the challenges that we ran into while stepping was just the coordination of the beat cause in step it’s all about one sound and everyone has to be on that one sound together,” said Brendan Romano, a junior and interdisciplinary studies major, who was a member of the Phi Beta Sigma fraternity for a year.

Sean Wilder, senior and business management major as well as member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, said it definitely has taken him a few tries to get the dance down to perfection.

“I think being precise, you know you want everything to look smooth, look good together. So sometimes you could be a little slow, everybody is going fast,” said Wilder.

The enthusiasm in the room had become electric. Each member took in their group of people that had wanted to see how each of the steps were done, and some even it took the outside hallway. Halfway through, some students had looked defeated but had still carried on despite the trial and errors.

Michelle said she saw the clinic as a great opportunity and experience for newcomers who may have a curiosity in joining the team. Wilder added that activities such as this have been part of a continuous series of events for his fraternity, and the organizations got together to celebrate unity within one another.

“I love it,” said Wilder. “The brotherhood is amazing. Everything that we do is all together and unified. One of my past brothers that had passed away, he helped found the organization Steppin’ Up Drill Team so we have a good relationship.”

Romano said he sympathized with students trying to learn the steps and students may need a few nights to get the routine down.

“I’m going into higher education.” said Romano. “It gives me an experience to not only help someone learn how to step, but to work on my teaching experience as well.”

Sean Wilder said as part of the semester events that his organization has planned throughout the summer, he hopes to continue to attract more newcomers and most definitely sees the Clinic to continue next year.

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