On a bright sunny weekend, a lone Unitrans rider, sitting on the top deck of a UC Davis classic red double-decker bus, will suddenly burst into an enthusiastically lip synched version of Queen’s “Bicycle Race.”
This solo act will set off a colorful chain reaction of fraternity brothers, sorority sisters, athletes and campus club members singing, dancing, bicycling and showing off their Aggie pride.
No, this is not a reproduction of High School Musical: The College Years. This is a preview of UC Davis’ first lip dub.
For those who have yet to catch on to the Youtube phenomenon, a lip dub is performed by an individual, or groups of individuals, who lip synchs his or her way through a popular song. When the original audio for the song is edited to fit the lip-synching, the result is a music video.
The UC Davis lip dub, organized by a group of Aggie TV members, will be filmed April 30 at 10 a.m. The path will start at the Memorial Union (MU) Unitrans terminal, weave its way throughout the MU and end with a spectacular finale on the quad.
Junior design major Alicia Sanhueza, media relations for Aggie TV, explained that they hold high expectations for UC Davis’ first lip dub.
“It’s go big or go home. We don’t just want to be another lip dub with five hundred views. We want it to be an epic shot,” Sanhueza said.
Senior Megan Frantz, a technocultural studies and American studies double major, explained that a UC Davis lip dub is a great opportunity to showcase different sectors of campus life.
“It’s great for students, parents and for prospective students to show them that [UC Davis] students are awesome,” Frantz said.
The roots of lip dub began when Frantz, Aggie TV’s executive producer, was shown Youtube clips of lip dubs at other colleges and universities last quarter.
Frantz explained that, at the time, she thought a lip dub would be a fun but unrealistic idea because of all the work and organization that would have to be coordinated in order for it to be successful.
But any initial reservations were swept away when a committee of Aggie TV staff members began the planning process, undertaking one of the most important lip dub tasks – song choice.
“We wanted things within the lyrics that would be visually pleasing and wanted to include students in the planning process,” Frantz said.
Voting for song choice was conducted via an Aggie TV Facebook poll over winter break with a variety of song choices including Metro Station’s “Shake It” and Harvey Danger’s “Flag Pole Sitta.”
According to Frantz, “Bicycle Race” won with a landslide vote.
But Queen’s three-minute ode to bicycle racing came up short on a trial run through of the determined path throughout the MU. The solution then and final song mix is a six-minute long mash up of “Bicycle Race” and Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.”
Aggie TV storyboard plans for the final lip dub path highlights some of UC Davis’ most distinctive features including bicyclists, Unitrans, the ASUCD Coffee House and the quad.
A sneak peek at some of the suggested scenes includes a line of bowlers throwing bowling balls down the MU Games Area lanes in synchronicity, students dancing on tables at the CoHo and ends with a flood of students on the quad for the grand finale.
UC Davis alumna English major Linda Wolf said that members of the Band-Uh! and Whymcycle bikes have already confirmed their participation and other campus clubs, sports teams, fraternities and sororities have also been contacted for collaboration.
“I’m hoping for 2,000 people. I’m dreaming of the quad to be packed with people. I hope this leaves a mark, a legacy,” Wolf said.
But even with a Queen mix and a creative and colorful route throughout the MU prepared, the UC Davis lip dub would still be missing a key ingredient – its soloists.
AGTV will be holding open auditions, March 11 from noon to 4 p.m. at 5A Freeborn Hall, searching for five to six main charismatic lip-synching solo artists.
“It’s not meant to be serious at all. We are looking for people who want to have fun, can be a dork and can let loose and have fun with it,” Sanhueza said.
Any aspiring lip dub soloists who think they can handle the attention of the cameras are encouraged to try out. No singing abilities are required.
All UC Davis students are welcome to take part in the final scene of the lip dub, which will take place on the quad on filming day.
“Come out with your friends, dress in ridiculous costumes, have fun showing off Davis. It’s one excuse to show the rest of California and the world how awesome and quirky Davis is,” Sanhueza said.
Aggie TV is planning to screen the lip dub at a premiere party on the quad two weeks after filming. The lip dub will also be made available to view on the aggietv.org web site and on Youtube.
Donations for the lip dub can be made at kickstarter.com. UC Davis lip dub buttons, stickers and T-shirts by Benson Chou’s Imaginary Zebra will be made available for donations ranging from $1 to $25.
For more information about how to be a part of the UC Davis lip dub, contact email@example.com or attend an informational meeting held tonight at 6 p.m. in 106 Wellman.
JESSY WEI can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.