The Colonial Life Arena was packed last Friday with students in line, eager to get a good seat for the annual Step Show.
What attracts so many people to the step show each year is that each organization puts on an original 10 to 12 minute performance.
“We’ve been practicing about two months straight,” said Jaquan Levine, third-year finance student and Iota Phi Theta member.
The women of Delta Sigma Theta got the audience’s attention from the start of the competition. Dressed as zombies and voodoo dolls, they wore pink wigs to make for more of a colorful performance.
Every organization had a specific theme to go along with their performance. Each theme was unique, ranging from Alpha Kappa Alpha’s “Rocky” to Iota Phi Theta’s “Pink Panther."
“Getting to see other organizations perform is something I love about the show,” said Jasmine Holt, fourth-year early childhood education student and Alpha Kappa Alpha member. “I love performing, it’s very exhilarating.”
Costumes and props were used to the full extent throughout the show. Shovels, canes, masks, rose petals and more were incorporated into various performances. Omega Psi Phi put on a "Purge" theme in which they used gold masks to match their signature gold boots.
Sigma Gamma Rho took on more of a classic theme with Sigmarella. Throughout this performance, Sigmarella had to learn from her three fairy godmothers — through dance, of course — that putting in hard work was the only way to attend the ball and get her prince.
The show acted as a concert between performances. Fog, music and changing lights entertained the audience between each routine. The DJ played songs that got people to dance in front of their seats or — for the brave — in front of the stage.
The show is unique in that every performance had moments when the dancers made a beat with stepping, clapping and shouting without music. It all flows rhythmically, which showed how talented the performers are.
“When you’re on stage, you don’t see the people, you just see the lights,” Levine said. “The mindset is to block everyone out and just focus on you and your organization on stage.”
The biggest moment of the show came from Iota Phi Theta. During the show, one member serenaded his girlfriend on stage to John Legend’s “All of Me.” Unexpectedly, he got down on one knee and proposed to her. After she said yes, the building was overtaken with applause.
Phi Beta Sigma’s performance was a throwback to the ’90s with a “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” routine. Once the theme song played, everyone sang along, and it wouldn’t be the “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” without the Carlton dance, which was a crowd favorite.
At the end of the night, Delta Sigma Theta and Phi Beta Sigma took home the top prizes.
But for the performers, the step show is more than a dance competition.
“This is just another way that we can bond as an organization,” Holt said.