The Rock It finals began and ended with fist-pumping and bunny-hopping theatrics Thursday night at The Blue Note.
The event was organized by Rockin’ Against Multiple Sclerosis, MU’s student-run philanthropy that raised money to find a cure for multiple sclerosis in the past week. The RAMS Steering Committee took the stage first, performing its own routine and ending with a synchronized jump.
After a short break, the competition began, featuring seven fraternities and seven sororities that advanced from the preliminary rounds on Monday and Tuesday. Throughout the night, the organizations put on five-minute lip-syncing performances in front of a record-breaking crowd, with fans even standing in the aisles.
Each act led into a changeover break that lasted the length of a song, as well as an intermission after the eighth routine. At the end of the three-hour event, RAMS committees announced awards on the stage.
Phi Gamma Delta placed first for fraternities, followed by Delta Chi and Delta Tau Delta. The winning performance featured a High School Musical theme, opening with “Start of Something New” and concluding with “All in This Together,” and a signature leap into the air. Songs were interspersed with acted out scenes from the movie.
As for sororities, Kappa Alpha Theta won for the eighth year in a row. In front of a sparkling, wall-sized heart, the bob-haired ladies performed in glittering red and gold dresses, spinning in circles like ballerinas and kicking legs like showgirls in Vegas. Alpha Chi Omega and Delta Delta Delta placed second and third, respectively.
Some contestants, such as Melissa Sandler, a senior from Alpha Phi, have taken part in Rock It every year they’ve been in college and have seen the event’s progression.
“It’s been really exciting,” said Sandler, who considers Rock It her favorite event of the year. “Every year the competition just keeps getting better.”
A good portion of the crowd consisted of performers themselves, although other attendees came to enjoy the show — sans costumes.
“It’s been fun seeing the community come together and support each other,” said sophomore Eric Weber, who came to support his fellow brethren from Phi Gamma Delta.
After the awards were announced, RAMS presented a check worth $65,000 to a representative for the MS Institute of Mid-Missouri. The check, which grew from various fundraising events over the past two weeks, met RAMS’ fundraising goal for the year.
“We want to win, obviously, but we know our hard work goes toward a charity,” said sophomore Elijah King, who performed with Delta Chi, before the standings were revealed. “The big picture is for people to gather, enjoy the night, and give back to the community and those who are not fortunate enough to move like we do.”
Several spectators filed out of the theatre after the performances were over. More left after various awards from the past two weeks were announced, leaving the lingering cheers of jumping Kappa Alpha Theta women and a few people here and there.
On the stage, though, stood RAMS coordinators and the MS Institute representative posing for photos, jumbo check in hand.