Park-Stradley goes viral with ‘Harlem Shake’ video
Published: Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 00:02
Park-Stradley Hall residents can “do the Harlem Shake” and more than 88,000 people have seen it.
Residents recently created a “Harlem Shake” video, a viral fad that includes people dancing in assorted and obscure costumes to American DJ Baauer’s song, “Harlem Shake.”
The video, posted to YouTube on Feb. 13, has since reached more than 88,000 views Tuesday evening.
Park-Stradley Hall director Paul Wojdacz said the idea to create the video came on Feb. 12 when some of the hall’s staff members were discussing the latest Internet trend at the front desk.
“I’ve always wanted to organize a flash mob for the building, and I love social media and viral videos, so I thought it would be an exciting opportunity,” said Wojdacz in an email. “Social media trends catch on quick and lose popularity fast … so we made the decision to do it and film it all in the same day.”
Wojdacz said the approximately one-and-a-half minute video features between 100 and 130 students dancing in four separate locations: the lobby of Park-Stradley, inside the Ohio Union, the Ohio Union bus stop and Mirror Lake. The last three locations were all filmed without any music.
“We wanted to make the video almost like an ‘eye-spy’ of people doing random unique things, which I think makes the video more unique than any of the videos out there,” Wojdacz said.
The video begins with a masked Wojdacz dancing in the hall’s lobby as students walk and sit casually nearby, paying him no attention.
As the music builds, the lyrics “Do the Harlem Shake” mark a scene switch, and suddenly, viewers are watching a packed lobby full of dancing bodies with quirky costumes and props.
Among the dancers are a panda, a hobbling old man and a unicorn in an orange tutu, but Wojdacz said “the clear star of the video” is Park-Stradley resident manager Ashlei Logan, a fourth-year in international business and German.
Logan is positioned in the center of the crowd, and as all the other participants dance wildly around her, she stands completely still, draped in an OSU blanket and impassively eating out of a jar of peanut butter.
Logan said as the video has gained popularity online, some fellow students have been reaching out to her on Twitter and even stopping her on the street.
“The other day, I was on the bus and a random stranger came up to me and asked if I was the girl eating peanut butter in the ‘Harlem Shake’ video,” said Logan. “We never expected this response and it’s a great feeling, but the coolest part is the fact that such a big community did come out and was a part of it, despite not much planning going into it.”
Jordan Ehrenberg, a first-year in business and a Park-Stradley resident, said she received an email letting her know about the filming a couple hours before, but was not able to attend because she was studying for a midterm.
“I had no idea what the ‘Harlem Shake’ videos were before,” Ehrenberg said. “But now after seeing the Park-Stradley one and some others, I definitely think ours is one of the best I’ve seen.”
The video ends with a message saying, “Everyone is a little weird and quirky. You are never alone in this world. There is a place for everyone at Ohio State. Go Bucks!”
Wojdacz said seeing and hearing all the responses to the video has been “amazing.”
“It shows you that even though OSU is big, we are one big family,” Wojdacz said. “It also shows if you give people the opportunity to dress funny and dance with a vacuum, people will show up.”
Other “Harlem Shake” videos staged at OSU have been popping up as well. One featuring the OSU wrestling team has more than 82,000 views and another that displays a red Teletubby dancing in front of William Oxley Thompson Memorial Library has almost 2,000 views.
OSU running back Carlos Hyde tweeted Monday evening that an OSU football “Harlem Shake” video was in the works.