By: Arianna Bratt
“And the winner of the 2017 Nykerk Cup Competition is…”
Those words will inevitably ring through DeVos Field House in just three short weeks, the night of October 28th to be exact. But, the words that will follow this red-underlined-incomplete-sentence are yet to be fought, rehearsed, sang, played, spoke, and deliberated over. The ultimate question remains: WHO WILL REIGN NYKERK CUP CHAMP? Even? Or Odd? And perhaps the even more interesting question: Where do your alliances lie?
Nykerk is a cutthroat (okay, not really, more like very loving and cuddly #NykerkLove) tradition at Hope College in which the freshman, coached by the juniors, and the sophomores, coached by the seniors, clash to create the most epic battleground ever laid for all things song, play, and oration. Let’s break it down and introduce our Nykerk warriors. *cue the drumroll*
The Orator: One oration wizard is chosen from each side to craft a heart-piercing verbal and physical articulation of the theme. Given a different prompt every year, the wisdom spewed from our orators are guaranteed to leave you a tingling combination of elated and teary-eyed.
The Play: 15 Odd Year and 10 Even Year play girls are destined to take the stage in original and hilarious plays riddled with Hope jokes, crazy makeup, intricate traditions, and outrageous plots. This is unlike any other play you’ve seen (no, but really…think crazy and then even crazier). Play will leave you in shock, awe, admiration, albeit slightly confused, but wanting to see it all over again.
The Song: Our song girls come with strong belting voices and in masses. Dazzling harmonies are met with captivating hand motions and prop use. Their impeccable timing pulls you into a never-before-experienced world of popular music and old classics. Get ready to incessantly and uncontrollably dance in your seat.
The Morale: Our ever-vital morale men are the stoke to the Nykerk flame. They cheer our girls on with daily skits and constant hilarity. On the night of Nykerk you will see them running around gladly bearing their servant’s heart, empowering all things ‘Kerk to ensue. (We love you, moral boys, oh yes we do)
As Even and Odd bring their best, the judges and the audience have the impossible task of choosing a winner year after year. So, where do your alliances lie? As a former Odd Year playgirl, I’m sure you can only imagine my preferences. My freshman year, I played the part of Puller (pictured below) a tribute to Nykerk’s counterpart – the Pull. And then my sophomore year, I played Train a clunky but loveable take on the trains that make Hope students constantly late to class. I have truly made some of my best friends during Play, in fact, 5 of us are living together our Senior Year! Yes, we are anticipating to never sleep #PlaySoHard
Alas, I am not here to sway you. Rather, choose for yourself and go root on your precious Nykerk girls with all the energy and love your heart can muster. October 28th at DeVos Field House, don’t miss it!