Sunday, December 14, 2008

Recap: MassachuStep | Wheelock

One of the highlights of my college experience (Florida State! - what-what) was going to step shows and coming out shows. I was feeling a bit reminiscent so I decided to check out how Massachusetts does it - alumnae style.

Wheelock Family Theater proved to be a good spot for the show. The Boston Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta set up their booths and were very organized. On the way in you passed a series of vendors selling Greek paraphernalia...after a hot minute though I wish they were also selling some popcorn, pretzels, bag a chips some soda something...anyways...I headed in with my Fab! Friend and Photographer Deniece (photos posted here were taken by me... more to be posted later) got good seats towards the front.

Around 6:20 (CP time y'all) the show began where our host introduced Rachel Walker who sang The Black National Anthem A-capella and then the Judges were introduced with each organization of the Divine 9 represented - which was kinda interesting because not all of them performed in the show...but whatever. Good to have an array.

Our intro performance was a group of 15 young women of Freedom Pride Step Team. They did an great job and were an excellent intro to the show. Gotta luv the ch'rin.

Freedom Pride

First up were the women and the first in the series were the AKA's. the ladies had on some serious pink and green heels! They were so fly! Their outfits however, were not flattering on everyone. Now, I know that the ladies of the pink and green pride themselves on being pretty and smart - heavy on the pretty - so I would think that the ladies would pick an outfit that flattered everyone. I mean I believe ALL women are beautiful, every shape and every size, but you gotta wear things that fit your shape. They should have worked just a little harder to find something flattering for everyone.


Alright enough with the outfits let's talk abou their step performance. Their theme...well...they didn't really have one. I mean I guess the theme was the history of the AKA's and how they were The First - they reminded us of that several times- and being pretty and smart. Now as far as stepping...I dunno ladies, in the beginning it seemed like y'all were more concerned about sweatin' out that weave rather than getting into to it and what was up with the whole penguin walk steppin - is there a rule that your hands have to stay in that position the entire time? Just wondering.

Now I do have to admit that the DJ and the tech team kinda jacked them up a few times - first with the start of their power point and later putting their music in the wrong order. So I think they should have gotten at least an extra point or two extra for that.

My favorite part of the show was their "Put a Ring on it " portion where they interpreted the fraternities. The woman who portrayed the Q's absolutely killed it. I almost died laughing. For this performance the ladies were pretty, but as this was a step competition I expected more.

Next up was Sigma Gamma Rho - There's was my favorite theme of all the teams. The ladies talked about how the sacred diamond had been stolen and they became super heroes to go save the diamond from the usual suspects (Deltas, AKA's and Zetas). Now what started off as very PG turned almost X-Rated when the pieces of several women's outfits started to come apart, straps were poppin' off, tutu's were comin' down - y'all should have done a dress rehearsal.

As far as the stepping was one moment that I liked where they did a step blind-folded with canes, but other then that it was mad sloppy and the energy was non-existent. Though who could blame them with all the problems they were having with their costumes? And the DJ messed up their stuff too...suspect.

Sigma Gamma Rho
(before the strip tease)

Next was the ladies of the hour and defending champions The Delta's. There intro was on point with no technical difficulties - ummm hmmm. Their them was the news about the sorority and how they had been making headlines since their inception. Their outfits were kind of Paige Boy style. They started off the show with acrobatics - everybody doing flips which was fine, but I am kind of disappointed when a team is less than 5 people. I mean how hard is it to step with 4 people? I also didn't like one of their quotes that said something about Dissolving the AKA organization all together - now I understand the history and all - but this is an alumnae event for charity - and in the beginning the host cautioned being respectful - and for them to turn around and start off their show saying something like that? - Kinda dirty.

That aside, they really carried the theme throughout and their interpretation of "Put a Ring on It" was real hot 'cuz they actually did the Beyonce move to the "t". The interpretation of the Alpha's was the best and their Q faces were classic.

The Delta's

After a short intermission they were back at it with the menses - yes men-ses ;)

Up first were the Alpha's. Again they had technical difficulties to begin with, but this one can't be blamed entirely on the DJ as the guy setting up took forever and a day. I mean they already had a 15 min intermission - I could of sworn it took them like an additional 5 minutes to put upa table and two chairs - ridic!

Their theme was good. A woman who goes to a store looking for a perfect thing and the perfect thing is actually an Alpha.- cute. I really liked their outfits, they looked good on every shape and size and were classy. I also liked that they used their voices a lot more than using voice overs like other teams, great diction and projection.

My favorite part of their performance would have had to be their reggae segment where they really put it on the ladies with their grinding moves in Jabowakee masks. They did a great job of getting the crowd involved. Their steps were good, sharp, a lot of beats that I had heard before, but I thought they had a solid performance. I did think it was a bit disrespectful that they totally messed up the stage and had to be told by the host to clean it up. The clean up was just as slow as the set up...

The Alpha's

And last of the evening were the Sigmas - now my Fab! Friend Aaron Wright was on the team so that may prove me to be a bit biased, but y'all know I still keep it real :). Their theme was that some unruly men were being sent to Brotherhood Camp and they maintained their theme throughout. Highlights of the show were the break in having a "Maury Show" moment where one "cadet" learned he was NOT the father. And the where they stepped with one foot, utilized the floor making beats with their heels and did precise hand movements. There were a few slip ups by my boy when his gloves came up shortly after the first few steps, but I was impressed that although they used a lot of props, they had someone to come and clean them up directly after and it was a clean performance with a lot of intricacies. I was thoroughly entertained.

The Sigmas

So the winners were (for the 4th year in a row) - The Delta's and The Sigma's! - which was well deserved. My Fab! Tips for this event is if this is really going to be a step competition then all of the Divine 9 need to participate or they should open it up to other alumnae teams in New England including New York. Otherwise take the the competition out of it and make it an exhibition. The Delta's and the Sigma's so clearly won - and the fact that it was the 4th time in a row! - is a sincere embarassment to the other teams and is just a waste of time and energy. I mean I wouldn't even show up next year if I were them.

I also think in the spirit of fairness the groups should be able to do dress rehearsal in the space or be allowed ample time to work with the DJ to make sure everyone is clear what the cues are. This would not only put the steppers at ease , but also be more entertaining for the audience.

Stay Fab! :)