PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Behind the Scenes: Crafting the Line Dance

Jaci Mayer, Line Dance Coordinator for THON 2011

The line dance is one of the most memorable parts of THON, something that from year to year dancers and spectators alike carry with them in their memories of THON. The finished product usually runs about five minutes long, and takes the better part of an hour to teach to the dancers, but the creation process takes months.

I got a chance to ask Morale Captain and Line Dance Coordinator Jaci Mayer about the development of the line dance. Mayer said that the Captains started thinking of ideas for this year’s dance back in October. “At our second or third meeting we start writing down different sports, news, pop culture that we like.” Anything related to Penn State or THON, especially anything new, goes into the mix as well.

The next step is choosing the song. “We listen to new ones every week , to make sure it has an upbeat tempo,” Mayer said. A catchy chorus is also important for a really good line dance. The Captains vote and eliminate songs until they find one that works best, deciding on a winner in December.

The line dance really begins to take shape in January. The Captains all go away for a weekend and set dance moves to each couplet in the song. “It kind of just writes itself,” said Mayer. “It’s a really cool process. We put it together in about 24 hours in a weekend.” Almost straight through, she added.

It may take an hour for dancers to learn the dance initially, but it takes much longer for the Captains to teach it to themselves. The dancers learn to perfect the line dance by taking a crack a it 46 times, but the Captains work intensely to make sure they have it down before THON. “We practice four hours every weekend,” Mayer said. “Two hours on Friday and two on Saturday, every weekend until THON.”

Mayer said her favorite parts of the dance are “the different dances incorporated into it, like the Dougie. And Toy Story really hits home with everybody.” Overall, “It’s fun,” she said.  “People really enjoy it. It’s relaxed but structured, which is good.” And judging by the energy in the BJC each time the Morale Captains are called the stage, everyone seems to agree.

About the Author

Dan McCool

Dan is a senior and has been writing for Onward State since January 2010. Did you miss him? Nah, neither did we. He's returning after a semester abroad in England and will be serving as Arts Editor. Favorite things in life include references to The Big Lebowski.

Comments

More by Dan

Erase Your Expectations: Dan McCool’s Senior Column

Don’t worry about what you should be doing, or how what you’re doing is going to fit into the cadre of college—or Penn State, for that matter—predetermined by our culture. Go make your own Penn State, without any expectations; you’ll be much happier.

After Condom Spat, UPUA Approves Funding for Sexual Violence Prevention & Awareness Month

UPUA Is Walking to Harrisburg, Not Much Else

Athletics

Shea Moyer Lifts Penn State Women’s Soccer Past West Virginia 1-0

Sophomore midfielder Shea Moyer scored the game-winning goal in the 80th minute of a rainy season opener at Jeffrey Field.

Penn State Women’s Soccer Poised For Strong 2018 Season

Incoming Penn State Track & Field Athlete Kristian Marche Shot To Death In Philadelphia

Former Women’s Gymnastics Coach Files Lawsuit Against Penn State Over Handling Of Abuse Allegations

Men’s Soccer Trio, Reading United Win PDL Eastern Conference Title, Fall Short Of National Championship

Student Life

Start The Semester Off Right With These Welcome Week Activities

Don your brightly-colored college shirt and officially begin your Penn State career with these Welcome Week activities.

Nike Releases New Penn State Sneakers

Penn State Parking Office Runs Into Student Permit Purchase Issues

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Onward State is hiring for the fall semester and we’d love to have you join us.

Start The Semester Off Right With These Welcome Week Activities

Don your brightly-colored college shirt and officially begin your Penn State career with these Welcome Week activities.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Assessing Penn State’s Front Seven Following Tuesday’s Medical Retirements

Penn State’s defensive line rotation will be shaken up following Ryan Buchholz’s medical retirement from football, while the coaching staff is letting the linebackers duel it out during camp.

Send this to a friend