One of the most beloved aspects of dance is its innate ability to tell a story or impart a message. Choreographers know that every time they send their troops out in Capezio tights and dance shoes, they are really sending them out to tell a story and share a sentiment with the audience.
The students and faculty at Oakton Community College in Des Plaines know this too. Taking advantage of the impact dance has on those who watch, they used Valentine’s Day to send a message about violence against women. One hundred dancers slipped into Bloch shoes and joined the One Billion Rising movement. Making use of the highly popular flash mob dance technique, these men and women aimed to draw attention to the startling fact that one out of every three women is the victim of physical or sexual violence.
Kristin McCarthy, organizer of the event and an associate professor in the Humanities and Philosophy Department said this, “We have a common template; we have the dance, we have the sort of poem that begins it, we have a common mission to say that one billion rising can feel like you’re connected.”
Judging by the attention the event received, this is a sentiment shared by many. Planning for next year’s event is already in the works. Together we can use our talents to raise awareness and stop injustice.