Lip Sync or Swim

The newly formed Lip Dub Club brings changes to a tradition
Official Lip Dub filmer, digital media junior Eszter Veres looks back and smiles while filming a Lip Dub segment during Club Rush 2023. This was the second time in the 2023-2024 school year that a segment of the lip dub was filmed.
Official Lip Dub filmer, digital media junior Eszter Veres looks back and smiles while filming a Lip Dub segment during Club Rush 2023. This was the second time in the 2023-2024 school year that a segment of the lip dub was filmed.
Ruhaan Sood

A correction was made to this story on 1/24/2024

In the story, it was stated “The Lip Dub Club also plans on having a Lip Dub premiere in Meyer Hall this year, with a documentary added on which will explain the process of how they recorded it.” However, this has changed. The Lip Dub Club no longer plans to have a premiere this year.

The information in the story has been fixed/updated. 

The camera pans down to the entrance of Building 2. “Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen cues. A student dressed in a tuxedo mouths the words of Freddie Mercury, leading the cameraman into the foyer with two dancers performing a pirouette. This scene marks the beginning of the 2019 Dreyfoos Lip Dub, starting a tradition that has continued to the current day.

2023, however, has brought change to the yearly event. At Club Rush, a new concept for the annual Lip Dub was announced with the Lip Dub Club, promising to split filming throughout the year and to change its format from a one-take shot to a multitude of spliced shots.



The First Take
The First Take

The beginnings of the Lip Dub came in 2019 when Dreyfoos alumnus Adam Goldstick was a sophomore. He says he had the idea for a Lip Dub simultaneously with the Student Government Association (SGA). Goldstick was the videographer for the one-take videos as students sang along to the music while he “toured” the school. 

He continued this role for the first two Lip Dubs, until he became SGA Historian his Junior year.

“We started them with the intent for them to become a tradition,” Goldstick said. “Like a visual yearbook for us to be able to look back and see who was in our class and see the energy of the school.” 

Goldstick and his SGA co-historian Allison Robbert collaborated on the 2020 video, which is the shortest at just eight minutes but showcased many ideas, including a classroom set on stage for the beginning of the Lip Dub.

“We kind of had to play a lot, which is how we got the first scene where we make it look like a pretend classroom,” Robbert said. “Then we put all the walls and the desks away, and that’s actually a dance number. That was kind of the craziness that we needed to save for the second year.”

This second year of the project went viral, racking up more than 600,000 views on YouTube and engagement on other platforms. 

“Even after Adam graduated, we didn’t talk to each other as much because we went our separate ways, (but) we would still text whenever (the video) hit a new milestone,” Robbert said.



Alongside the growth of the Lip Dub, the parallel tradition of Seminole Ridge High School’s annual Lip Dub continued, which predates Dreyfoos’. The unofficial rivalry between the schools has reached audiences on Twitter and local radio, where listeners have been encouraged to vote for their favorite of the two.

“It was kind of exciting amongst ourselves to have a little sense of competition,” Goldstick said of the so-called feud. “You know, setting the bar high as you’re working to create it.”

More development on the Seminole Ridge rivalry will come in future versions of this article.
The “Rivalry”

Alongside the growth of the Lip Dub, the parallel tradition of Seminole Ridge High School’s annual Lip Dub continued, which predates Dreyfoos’. The unofficial rivalry between the schools has reached audiences on Twitter and local radio, where listeners have been encouraged to vote for their favorite of the two.

“It was kind of exciting amongst ourselves to have a little sense of competition,” Goldstick said of the so-called feud. “You know, setting the bar high as you’re working to create it.”

More development on the Seminole Ridge rivalry will come in future versions of this article.



Alongside the growth of the Lip Dub, the parallel tradition of Seminole Ridge High School’s annual Lip Dub continued, which predates Dreyfoos’. The unofficial rivalry between the schools has reached audiences on Twitter and local radio, where listeners have been encouraged to vote for their favorite of the two. “It was kind of exciting amongst ourselves to have a little sense of competition,” Goldstick said of the so-called feud. “You know, setting the bar high as you’re working to create it.” More development on the Seminole Ridge rivalry will come in future versions of this article. (Photo by Allison Robbert)
Dreyfoos alumnus Lexi Critchett gives orders to a group of communications students during one of the multiple filmings of the 2022-2023 school year lip dub. To streamline the process, the filming of the lip dub is being shot in intervals at special school occasions throughout 2023 and 2024.
Passing the Torch

The Lip Dub, like many school operations, was derailed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to the event being skipped in 2021. The following year, communications junior Lexi Critchett and communications senior Caroline Murray took on the project.

“Going into it my junior year, I don’t think I realized just how much it entailed,” Critchett said. “It’s a big undertaking, involving assigning teachers as supervisors, breaking down the songs, and making sure that you have the exact timestamps of where you’re going to stop and start each song. You have the lyrics, and you have the choreography planned out with each of the singers that’s doing it. There’s just a lot that goes into it.”

Critchett continued to film and organize the Lip Dub during her senior year, leading up to the most recent Lip Dub in March 2023. Through Critchett’s years as director, the Lip Dub continued to be filmed in one take during a “Lip Dub” allocated morning of Spirit Week, leading to long filming days with multiple attempts at creating the video.

“You need to be adaptable and just kind of be able to go with the flow and figure things out as they come up,” Critchett said. “Because you can never really predict what’s going to go wrong.”

Critchett’s final year organizing the Lip Dub has led up to the current era. The event is once again run by an SGA historian; this year, the reins have been taken by digital media junior Eszter Veres.



Dreyfoos alumnus Lexi Critchett gives orders to a group of communications students during one of the multiple filmings of the 2022-2023 school year lip dub. To streamline the process, the filming of the lip dub is being shot in intervals at special school occasions throughout 2023 and 2024. (Photo by Natalie Ryder)
The Present and the Future
The Present and the Future

While Veres has the ultimate task of completing the Lip Dub this year, this is the first time that there will be multiple shots filmed throughout the year, as opposed to one day during Spirit Week. As a co-creative director of the Lip Dub Club, specifically heading the videography category, the task of recording the Lip Dub falls into her hands.

“We definitely want to include the community more this year and make sure everyone’s input was being heard and communicated,” Veres said. “Making sure (the Lip Dub) is more organized and just making sure that we have fun.”

Some students prefer this new change.

“It’s a good thing because some years it feels like (the Lip Dub) is rushed,” vocal senior Emily McLaughlin said. “But I feel like (filming) throughout the year (will be) better, and it might help with preparation.”

Digital media junior Ella Front is the other co-director, but she focuses more on the behind-the-scenes aspects of the video: planning the Lip Dub, helping to curate the soundtrack, and editing it.

Some students, such as communications freshman Lian Dussie, are in favor of filming the Lip Dub through multiple separate clips, thinking that it “shows different events that we have,” but others are worried this might disrupt tradition.

“Idealistically, it’s a great idea to break it up into parts,” communications senior and assistant director for last year’s Lip Dub, Harrison Mandell, said. “But you also lose the core value of the Lip Dub which is the one-shot school spirit. But I think if the (Lip Dub Club) did it tastefully and in a way that looked cohesive, then it would have been just the same.”

But to some, trying to film and produce the Lip Dub just with a barrage of different clips taken throughout the year may be quite difficult.

“I think the idea is really good,” Mandell said. “But I’ve been talking with them a little bit, and it sounds like a lot of the stuff that they have been getting hasn’t been so usable and so great. It sounds like it’s gonna end up being a similar one-shot on the day of.”

So far this year, the Lip Dub Club has filmed segments of Club Rush, Dreyfoos’ Eras Tour Fun Friday, Fall Dance, and the “Mamma Mia!” production.

With the Lip Dub Club initiated this year, it has allowed more students to be involved with videography, editing, and overall planning such as picking out the music that will be sung. However, some have wondered how including the input of so many people on campus may affect the production.

“I think the Lip Dub is such a big responsibility that I’m happy that there’s more of a collaborative effort, and it’s not falling on one person,” Mandell said. “At the same time, trying to take so many different people’s ideas and opinions into creating one project and one video will end up being a little bit conflicting. But I’m really excited to see what they come up with.”

While more kids are allowed to help behind the scenes, it also allows club members to have a better chance to be featured in the Lip Dub.

“The people that are in (Lip Dub Club) have an advantage for being selected down the road to be featured because we have that connection already, and it’s easier,” Front said. “But features are not limited just to the club; we really want to showcase the entire student body.”

If you are interested in joining the club, follow @lipdubclub on Instagram, where you can find the Google Classroom code and meeting dates. On the Google Classroom, you can find places to voice your opinion on song selections for the Lip Dub.

This is a developing story.

Lip Dub Directors Share Their Thoughts
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An update to this story was made March 13. 

Q + A with Seminole Ridge Community High School TV Production Teacher Earle Wright

What’s your role on the Lip Dub?

“The Lip Dub is kind of my passion project. I executive produce it, I coordinate it with SGA, and I organize it with my TV production club. Our students coordinate with all the various teams, sports, and activities on our campus and give us (TV production club) input on it, and then I kind of oversee the whole thing. I end up shooting and editing it, largely because I find that the students on the day of, when it’s crazy and you got 2,000 kids in the hallway, that they’re more focused on if the teacher is the one coming through and (are) less goofy than they would be if a student was coming through with a camera.”

What do you think the importance of the Lip Dub is to your school?

“For us, I think it is a big chance to market and showcase the things that we have in our school that make us who we are. So I think a lot of schools should do it because it’s a lot of fun. It’s really a big mobile pep rally. You’re going to have pep rallies anyway… I think, for a lot of kids, it’s their favorite day of the year. It’s the best day of the year for our kids because they’re always like, ‘I wish every day could be like this’ We wouldn’t learn a whole lot doing that every day, but it does make it exciting and fun, and they get to showcase the parts of the school that they’re really excited about.”

What is the rivalry that Dreyfoos and Seminole Ridge have now with the Lip Dub?

“There is rivalry only because some people get their feelings hurt about things it was never meant to be. I know a couple of years ago, some of the Dreyfoos kids were upset about the (our 2022) Lip Dub. We did a joke in the Lip Dub (5:14) that was never actually meant to be a joke on Dreyfoos. It was originally a joke where we planned to have some of our band kids and we were sticking them in our Automotive Academy. So we did the Radiohead song ‘Creep’ with the line about ‘I don’t belong here,’ because the kids were going to be with instruments standing in there with all these kids who were working on trucks and they were like, ‘I don’t belong here.’ Well, those kids flaked out and didn’t show up at the rehearsal. So we cut them, but I already had the music mixed. We already had everything timed. And we’re like, what can we do? And we’re like, what if we stuck kids from other schools there? So I have a lot of teachers who have kids at other schools, so we quickly pulled together a couple of shirts from Dreyfoos, a couple of shirts from Royal Palm (Beach High school), Palm Beach Central (High School), and I think Wellington (High School). So I had kids representing the schools around us, just for kids that are like, ‘We don’t belong here. Why are we here in automotive?’ And I think some of the Dreyfoos kids took that as knocking on them in the Lip Dub, which was totally not the intent, but it came off that way. I heard through the grapevine that some of the kids were upset, I don’t know why they’re upset. It was not a dig at you guys at all.’ 

“I think some of the rivalry came from (the radio station) 95.5, a few years back, put one of your guys’ Lip Dubs on there and was promoting the heck out of it. Then they got ours and were promoting it, and they just had this idea that we’re going to pit us against each other, a who did it better kind of thing. Then I think the Sun Sentinel did the same thing with the Lip Dubs. If done right, and I’ve had this conversation with our principal, the pep rallies should always be about celebrating what’s positive on your own campus. It shouldn’t be bigger than anybody else, it is what it is. Now, do you hold yourself to a standard and in some competitive way want to be better than somebody else’s or show out? Sure, but honestly, you’re competing with yourself. I know for us, our Lip Dub last year was really good, but it wasn’t as good as the year before, and might not have been as good as what we did in 2020. Personally, I’m challenging my staff, my kids, and SGA. I’ve already had meetings with them about how guys (they) need to be better.”

What do you hope to improve on in your future Lip Dubs?

Pacing is part of it. I really like fast-paced and I don’t like drawn-out segments. I feel like our lip dubs (have gotten) a little bit long lately. I would like it to be a little bit shorter, and a little tighter, faster pace. And that’s the one critique I would give to Dreyfoos, sometimes you have some really great moments, my oldest daughter went to Dreyfoos and I know and love Dreyfoos. My recommendation for you guys is to really focus on the things you guys do well or the things that make your school unique, the traditions, and showcase high energy tight(ly). I don’t want gaps in things, I want concept surprises, I want things where it’s like ‘Boom, you’re here and then you see something different,’ and I don’t want to do the obvious songs. You know, the kids come to me with a list of songs, (and) I’m like, ‘That is so obvious.’ We’re not going to do 15 Taylor Swift songs. We have our own rule that we make it harder but I set a rule for the first year or two that I never reuse a song. So the kids will come with songs, but we did it in 2017, or we did it in 2016 or 2015. I won’t touch the song we’ve done previously, not that we can’t, we just don’t. (…) When I go through and I look at other lip dubs across the country, I’m like, ‘Oh, they’re all using the same song. I don’t want the same songs (it’s) just so lame.’”

Do you think more schools should do Lip Dubs?

I really do and I know that I’ve spoken to a few schools. Palm Beach Gardens High (School) has talked about doing it. I know they have a new SGA advisor (who) is kicking around the idea of doing one. Also, I heard through the grapevine that Royal Palm (Beach High School) was talking about doing one. This is where I’ll give props to Dreyfoos over the years, you guys are the only ones, besides us, that have tried to do one (a Lip Dub) with any kind of consistency, like actually doing them annually. Royal Palm (Beach High School) only did one in the last 10 years. Dwyer did one, but Dwyer didn’t even try to shoot it themselves. They hired somebody to shoot it for them, and that was probably eight or nine years ago and it wasn’t great. I don’t think that having somebody outside your campus shooting it and taking and doing it is good, because they don’t get what makes your campus, so I think they lost a lot with it. (…) Not too many others are trying and they’re not easy.

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Gavin Murray
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Gavin Murray is a first-year staffer and coverage staffer on The Muse. Outside writing for the newspaper, Gavin spends his time at the beach, hanging out with his friends, and playing with his dog Charlie. Gavin also enjoys learning about the chaotic world, listening to music, and debating. Gavin can't wait to explore his passion of journalism as a staffer on The Muse
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Graeme Melcher is a first-year staffer and writer on The Muse. When not writing, he's taking film classes, playing video games, and solving the New York Times crossword puzzle daily. He's on the Dreyfoos slam poetry team and has fainted in the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. He's thrilled to write for the Dreyfoos public and share his words with the world.
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