Another Round of Delta Underground!
There are so many unique performances, speakers, and charity benefits that are happening every week on Vanderbilt’s campus, but Delta Underground holds a special place in my heart. Every fall, my entire sorority puts together a show for which all the proceeds go to our philanthropy, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital. Imagine one hundred and twenty girls, some (like me) who have never performed a day in their life, dancing across the Sarratt Cinema stage dressed as British schoolgirls, Kanye and Kim Kardashian, and an angsty punk rock band. We go all out, and it was rewarding to see the months of late night dance rehearsals, costume coordination, and minor performance anxiety finally pay off.
The preparation began when a group of twelve girls in my sophomore pledge class first met in Memorial Gym to start piecing together our candy-themed dance to a montage of “I Want Candy” by Aaron Carter and “Candy Shop” by 50 Cent. I was a little ambitious to sign up for the “intermediate” group considering the fact that the only athletic thing that I did in high school was cross country, which to my detriment, doesn’t help out much in intermediate dance. Nonetheless, my encouraging team coached me through all the complex twirls and footwork, and I by the final week, I was feeling prepared for my dancing debut.
When the big day finally rolled around, I woke up with a wave of excitement to see everything come together. We arrived at Sarratt Cinema at noon to do a run through before the 2 pm show, and it was exhilarating to see the final product all touched up and ready for show time. As the auditorium began to fill, the lights dimmed, and my entire sorority stormed the stage to “Kill the Lights” by DJ Cassidy.
When the loud music and cheering faded, the audience silenced and Grace, one of our 8-year miracle children, took the stage to speak about her experience overcoming childhood Leukemia at the young age of 5 years old. It was so inspiring to hear the story of a girl who is more courageous than I could ever hope to be and to see her enthusiasm for life regardless of her suffering. Starting the show on such a humbling note really put our performance into perspective, and it definitely reminded me that it’s not about how flawlessly our performance unfolds but rather about the lives that are being changed by Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital.
After the inspiring speech by Grace, the show unfolded with eight different dance performances and an appearance of the Melodores, Vanderbilt’s premier male a capella group (they won NBC’s show the Sing-Off in 2014 which is pretty freaking awesome). We performed the entire show three times throughout the day, and by the end of the night, I had pretty much lost my voice. It was an adrenaline-pumping day, full of a lot of crazy costumes, sisterhood, and inspiring stories.
After the final show, we were so proud to announce that we raised over $10,000 for our philanthropy! Honestly, it was one of the most rewarding experiences that I have had at Vanderbilt thus far. We put in so much hard work for our event, but doing it with my sorority sisters made it more enjoyable than I ever would have imagined. I also pushed myself to do something that I never would have done on my own, and it was for such an incredible cause! If you weren’t able to come this year, don’t worry we will be there again next year, and you should definitely stop by!