The senior class was best in show at the 2016 Oyster Bay High School pep rally, winning the event’s annual lip sync competition by taking the students through their lives -- in music.
The rally, held Friday in the high school gym, celebrated the school’s fall sports teams and showcased each grade’s dancing talents. Each class picked a theme, provided by the seniors, for their performance.
The seniors, clad in red, gave a pop-themed performance that won first prize, as voted on by a group of faculty. The freshmen were awarded second place for their Broadway dance, while the juniors’ techno rave finished third and the sophomores' rock routine took fourth. The seniors’ take on pop music featured hit songs for every year from 1999, when most were born, to the present, complete with a cardboard “time machine.” They also wore shirts designed to look like music players on the back.
The volume slider on the bottom read “2004” on one side, signifying the year the senior class entered kindergarten, and “2017,” its graduation year, on the other. Highlights from the routine included Britney Spears’ “Toxic,” “Closer” by the Chainsmokers featuring Halsey and a fake graduation ceremony at the end.
Homecoming queen Lauren Orlowski, 17, credited her grade’s victory to its preparation.
“It’s a monthslong process of making up dance moves and making a mix,” she said. The group of 35 performers broke into groups at first to learn their respective parts before having larger practices and slowly weaving the entire routine together. She said that in the beginning they rehearsed once or twice per week, but the week of the pep rally they practiced every night, sometimes up to four hours.
“Building props, making T-shirts … there’s a lot of arguing and long nights,” Orlowski said. But when the seniors wrapped up their final practice at 10:45 p.m. the night before, she believed they had what it took to win.
“After the practice last night, we knew we were ready and we were so excited,” she said.
Orlowski’s boyfriend and homecoming king Aaron Rudnet, 16, was glad to see the Class of 2017’s efforts finally pay off.
“We wanted to win because we had never won,” he said of his victorious class.