Origins of the Boogie Club

The Boogie Club was founded in 2001 with the original intention of boogying for lost causes. As their name suggests, the Boogie Club stages boogies all over campus throughout the year. Of their first boogies, they boogied for prohibition on National Coming Out Day. Other intended boogies included boogying for sexual abstinence and standardized shoe sizes. As one anonymous Boogie Spy explained to the Argus’ Dana Goldman ’04:

Shoes worn by boogie club members are standardized, including size. This means that some of the more oafish members require their feet to be bound, while petite members are given prosthetic toes. Some find this practice offensive, and we are planning a boogie for foot standardization in front of Bob’s Store on Main St. sometime in the near future, where we will all be bedecked in podiatric finery.

However, some feel the group has lost some of its original sense of intentional misdirection in lieu of misdirected intention. Back in 2004, two seniors Nora Painten ’04 and Lily Thom ’04 coauthored this wespeak:

It may seem like the boogie club is just a collection of random kids wiling out and dancing strangely. Not so. The boogie club used to have a very clear movement vocabulary, musicality, unified group energy, consistent approach to audience interactions and general performance structure that we must admit has been lacking lately. Perhaps this is an intentional shift in dance style. Yet we fear that the original boogie dance techniques are being diluted. Where are you, Atari screen? Where are you, basketball hoop? What happened to the hysterics, the originality, the climax and release that made us so ‘excited’ to come to lunch everyday with the hopes of seeing the boogie club in action?

Boogie clubbers used to go out there and have pseudo-religious fits of ecstasy. The dance space was a mystical area unto itself. The fourth wall wasn’t broken. The motion was nonstop yet full of subtlety in movement quality and dynamic changes. You could go check your mail, pee, or get a burrito but whenever you looked at the dance space you knew you could expect the comfort of continuous, unadulterated, committed performance.

Since when is hippie-jam-band-Phish-concert-dancing considered boogieing? Its not that exciting to see people sort of half dancing but mostly looking at each other, copying each others moves, and apologetically smiling at the people watching… Boogie Club, we miss your original flair and we urge you to aim toward recapturing your unique aesthetic – the kind that gets us hot and bothered.

The current Boogie Club is a collection of wonderful Wesleyan people, but I feel perhaps the “awkward” bug has bit them a little bit too hard this past year. Awkward as we all feel at Wesleyan, Boogie Club should be a sacred space where all common sense should be damned and all shame checked at the door. As my Wesleyan dance class instructor, Professor Bobbitt used to say, “Try and wiggle with your intestines. Try to speak with your elbows! Have a conversation between your knees and your spine!”

We love you Boogie Club and we want to see you shine like the shiny, hyperactive sunshine children you are!

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