• Johanna Ziegler

Lip Dub, Assemble!

Updated: Mar 4

Video by Emma Lynch

The Minarets Media program is counting down the days until Feb. 28., the day of the annual Lip Dub’s triumphant return to Minarets.

The Minarets Lip Dub is a school wide event in which all students participate in a single shot music video. As the camera maneuvers throughout the school grounds, different groups of students from clubs and classes are highlighted in addition to displaying the school spirit as a whole. The Minarets Lip Dub is one of the school’s time-honored traditions, starting back when the school was only a few years old. Media teacher and lip dub producer Juan Ortiz is proud of the tradition and its impact, saying, “These lip dubs help build a sense of community...this is a chance for us as a school to support a cause that we believe in.”

To pull off such a complex, single shot music video, dozens of student volunteers have to fulfill a series of duties, many of them happening behind the camera. The lip dub tech crew includes the not only the cameraman but also the camera spotter (pulls the cameraman backward so he/she does not crash into anything), the sound technician (carries a large speaker behind the cameraman to play the song), several ushers (open doors for the film crew and gives cues to the talent) and the editor (combines footage and audio files to create the final product).

In addition to the tech crew, the lip dub also heavily relies on on-camera talent. About a dozen or so students volunteer to sing in front of the camera and lead the rest of the student body through the route of the music video. “Talent has to know all the lyrics” says Ortiz. “We have to have all the timings down and set so that things happen at a certain time. We have people positioned in certain places, and they have to know where to go and be directed behind the scenes. It’s really pretty hectic.”

Part of what makes the annual lip dub so impressive is that all of the roles are student filled, even the directors. Senior Mandi Villanueva, co director of this year’s video along with senior Emma Lynch, appreciates the hands on involvement but acknowledges the challenges that come with it. “Lip dubs take a lot of work. We typically have two directors because it takes so much work,” she says. “It’s a really big production...if we’re missing one role, then it’s lacking in certain areas.”

Villanueva is no stranger to the Minarets Lip Dub. This will be her second year as co director and her third time starring as on-camera talent herself. This year, she is particularly excited to co-direct the video, saying, “I want to find a way to show the different outlets of diversity that we have at our school. I think it’s really important to show that Minarets isn’t just a sports school or just a media school...I want every club, every sport, every organization that is involved with Minarets, I want them to have a voice in the lip dub.”

Though this year’s song has not been selected yet, there is speculation that the video’s theme may be something along the lines of “Supporting the Victims and Firefighters of the Australian Wildfires.” For the past two years, the school’s lip dub videos have taken on themes that reflect current events, such as school shootings and supporting local first responders. There is high anticipation this year as to what song will be selected and how it will be executed by the student body.

One thing is for certain, this year’s lip dub will likely outdo previous years. “We want to build off the success that we’ve had,” says Villanueva. “We want to try to and find something bigger and better but still paying a tribute, still sending a big message of how diverse the culture at Minarets is and how proud we are to be Mustangs and to live in the Central Valley.” For the Minarets Lip Dub production team, there’s nowhere to go but up.

If you’re a student, be sure to check your email for a survey link to suggest a song for this year’s video!

Check out our past Lip Dubs here!


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