While most students were beginning to study for their finals this spring, Greek brothers and sisters were wrapping up a different, probably more exciting, project. The audience was full of supportive brothers, sisters, friends, and families cheering and expressing their love for those on-stage. For many of the fraternities and sororities, the night of April 23rd was the end of 6 months of constant hard work and bonding fun.
For those who aren’t familiar with this unique and intense routine, it’s a charity event and annual competition between each fraternity and sorority to raise money for ARC, a local non-profit for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Although no one in Greek life receives awards, the organizations take great pride in their efforts and victories as well as their contribution to the community. The Assistant Director of Support Services for ARC, Penny Fong, even spoke to the packed bleachers in the Convocation Center about ARC and served on the judge panel.
Before the night officially began, Fong said, “I’m going to enjoy repping the organization everyone is raising money for,” as well as sharing her knowledge of singing and dancing from her youth.
After months of coming up with ideas, organizing the routines, making props, holding tryouts for dancers and hands (the background dancers who perform hand-movements instead of full-body), and practicing over and over again, everyone finally had the chance to perform and have fun watching everyone dance their hearts out. Greek Sing is an opportunity to show the unity within the Greek system and have a friendly competition.
Even though they may not have been involved, the performances were also entertaining for the audience members. Two students who aren’t in Greek life who enjoyed the event were Charlotte Lanier and Rachel Foulds, both junior IDLS majors, who came to support their friends Betsy Yuhas, a Gamma Phi Beta dancer, and Sean Evans, a Sigma Nu dancer. Before it all began, Foulds said she was most excited, “to see Betsy kill it,” and Lanier was excited, “to see Sean do his thing.”
Yuhas and Evans did, in fact, “kill it” with their performances as a jailed Disney villain and Candyland kid. Yuhas rocked the stage as Maleficent with several other villainous women, orange-clad prisoners, and prison guards. Evans and his brothers wore denim shorts and white button-downs with red overalls and bowties. Both dancers, as well as their sisters and brothers, had a great time watching and dancing too.
“It’s one of the few events where all of Greek life is together and cheering each other on,” said Evans, a junior biotechnology major.
These two hardworking organizations weren’t the only ones who left the stands of roaring with support. Alpha Delta Pi, for instance, tied for best sorority props with their James Bond-themed choreography. With red lights for lasers, a sister singing Skyfall, and costumes for robbers and Bond women, it’s no wonder that they are considered one of the best in Greek Sing history.
Lauren Perry, a senior biology and hands for Alpha Delta Pi, said, “Being a senior, it’s a really good way to bond with the newer sisters.” She also said that her favorite part is the day of, seeing everything come together after so much effort.
The new fraternity at JMU, Phi Kappa Psi, won best fraternity for dance and were the 3rd place fraternity overall in their first Greek Sing with their Justin Timberlake dancing.
“Phi Kappa Psi breaks a lot of stereotypes,” said Jacob Reister, brother and freshman nursing major, as he encouraged his new fraternity.
Members of this new brotherhood say that they are bringing new traditions to Greek life here. The spectating brothers were excited to see the dancers give it their all, especially because they were all very motivated to do their best and represent themselves next to other fraternities with longer histories at JMU.
“It’s a good opportunity to show who we are,” said Daniel Kim, brother and freshman communications major.
Their popular Timberlake-inspired show, which the sororities cheered especially loud for, included simple but recognizable costumes and well-choreographed dancing to some of his classics.
Like many similar sentiments heard throughout the night, Evan Brenner’s, brother and freshman health sciences major, said that what he wanted the most was, “to see our brothers and close friends have fun.”
The rest of the brotherhoods and sisterhoods gave it their all and wowed the crowd too with themes like Egypt, Willy Wonka, High School Musical, and 90s. There were also many other creative themes like mermaids, construction workers, deserted plane crash survivors, and witches from American Horror Story.
While the judges were deliberating and making what must’ve been very difficult decisions, the stadium roared with everyone chanting for their respective fraternities and sororities. When the panel returned, it was announced that for props, the winning fraternity was Theta Chi and the other tied sorority was Alpha Sigma Alpha. For hands, Alpha Sigma Phi won for fraternities and the sorority tie was between Alpha Sigma Alpha and Delta Gamma. For dance, the sorority that took home the victory was Sigma Kappa. The other overall scores were fraternities Alpha Sigma Phi in 1st and Delta Upsilon for 2nd, and the sororities were 1st Sigma Kappa, 2nd Alpha Sigma Tau, and 3rd Kappa Alpha Theta. Everyone was cheering and celebrating as they left. Although some were disappointed, everyone gave it their all and had a blast.