Taking a step for unity

Jocelyn Robinson

Rhythm and attitude ruled the night at Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity’s Unity Step Off competition.

At DUC Theater, white sorority and fraternity members spent Thursday evening stepping — something typically done by black organizations.

“It’s people of different cultures and backgrounds coming together,” said Mark O’Brien, a graduate student from Belize who helped organize the show. “That was our number one goal.”

The theater was packed as students waited for the show to start. Many were curious to see what the different organizations could do. Others came to support their friends who were performing.

The step show featured Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, Sigma Kappa sorority, Alpha Omicron Pi sorority and Kappa Delta sorority competing against one another. Omega Psi Phi fraternity and Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority stepped in exhibition performances but weren’t part of the competition.

The Pikes won the competition for the fraternities and the KDs for the sororities. The Sigma Kappas came in second.

Although some performers were nervous about being on stage, others couldn’t wait to show what they could do.

“It was a huge adrenaline rush,” said Horse Cave sophomore Alice Caldwell, a KD. “We strive to do our best, and we were out there ready to win.”

The fraternities and sororities came up with their own moves and routines. Members of the black sororities and fraternities screened and critiqued the performances, telling the groups what they should add or take out, Nashville senior Brandie Resha said.

“They were wonderful and helped us out a lot,” said Resha, a member of AOPi.

George Taylor, a Western alumnus from Hopkinsville, also helped organize the step off. He said he appreciated the generosity of organizations like AKA, Phi Beta Sigma fraternity and Delta Sigma Theta sorority, who helped critique performances.

“They lent steps of their own and put some spice into routines,” Taylor said.

Louisville senior Diana Ray, an AKA, said the groups that she helped quickly picked up the moves they were taught.

“They had the energy and enthusiasm they needed, and they looked like they had fun,” Ray said after the show.

Audience members cheered and clapped throughout each performance, giving several groups standing ovations.

Cave City senior Chris-Sean Wood, a Sigma, came to support the Sigma Kappas.

“It was a great show,” he said. “I’m glad the Alphas put it together.”

Reach Jocelyn Robinson at [email protected]