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USF catches the “Harlem Shake” virus

Published: Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 00:02

 

Move over Gangnam Style. There’s a new dance craze in town.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a neatly formed rock, you’ve noticed the viral “Harlem Shake” YouTube videos have invaded all forms of social media, from the Twitterverse to Facebook walls. 

The original video, which was posted last week, now has more than 2.5 million views on YouTube and pages full of similar “Harlem Shake” dance videos. 

Everything from “Peanuts” characters to “Star Wars” action figures, local news broadcasters and Jimmy Fallon have made an appearance on the social network to showcase their “Harlem Shake” skills.

Before the flash-mob style gyrating and flailing-about begins, a single person, usually in some sort of headdress, mask or helmet dances in a room of unsuspecting colleagues or friends. At the 15-second mark, the video editing flashes to those unsuspecting people wiggling off-beat to the now-famous song by Baauer.

USF’s first spin-off in the viral video kicked off with the College of Arts and Sciences’ video of interns Dominique Benjamin, Marc Seide and Rebecca Torriani spreading USF spirit with a Harlem-style groove last Friday. 

In an attempt to promote the College of Arts and Sciences, the trio along with their director decided to make and edit the video before Dean Eisenberg, dean of the college had time to participate.

“I would like to get him to do it if he gets the time,” Benjamin, a senior majoring in mass communications, said. “And he would absolutely be down to do it because he is just a fun guy.”

Benjamin starts the approximately 30-second video as — like all the others — the solo dancer, when about halfway through the other two join the party.

“We were just kind of messing around in the office, and we read in an article that this was the new thing,” Benjamin said.  “There wasn’t much coercing to do it necessarily. The other interns are fun people and we were in the office anyway.”

As of Tuesday night, the College of Arts and Sciences’ version of “Harlem Shake” had more than 350 views on YouTube. 

More than 70 people are slated to attend the USF filming of the viral dance at the MLK fountains happening at 2 p.m. today, according to a Facebook event page, and students can also partake in another “Harlem Shake” film at Campus Lodge at 1 p.m. today.

Benjamin said he hopes to star in a second USF video contribution to the “Harlem Shake” Internet fad. 

“I’ll probably go to the one at the MLK plaza,” he said. “It would be good exposure for the school, so hopefully it goes viral.”

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