The halls of Hamburg High School were lined by cheering students waving signs and lip singing “This is my fight song” while the camera rolled on April 27.
The Hamburg Area High School 2017 “Fight Song” Lip Dub video takes the viewer on a tour of the high school, featuring student groups, clubs, organizations, classes, athletes, artists and musicians and concludes outside where a crowd cheers. Volunteer firefighters and EMTs brought their vehicles to offer their support as well.
Hamburg High School students, staff and the Hamburg community had come together during the creation of a student produced Lip Dub in dedication to the health struggles of math teacher Mrs. Tina Argot, who is battling breast cancer, and music teacher Dr. Christine Ryan, who is recovering from brain surgery. The video featured “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten.
The film project is spearheaded by Hamburg senior Yelitza Pagan. Pagan produced and directed the video as a project in her Audio Visual class. Previously, she told Hamburg Item that, “This project started out with wanting to come together as a school for two amazing teachers.” After her AV teacher suggested creating a lip dub, “I knew this would be a perfect thing for Dr. Ryan and Mrs. Argot to show how much support they have here at Hamburg.”
Pagan’s Audio Visual teacher Mary-Elizabeth Eshbach said senior Stephen Eberhardt helped Pagan film and edit and sophomore Adam Palko remixed the song. Music teacher Mrs. Angela Dowd directed the orchestration of the quartet featured in the piece. Junior Kaylah Lenhart is the featured soloist. Music teacher Mrs. Sara Jackson helped with technical and emotional support. Custodian Connie Adam provided her rooftop footage for the ending.
“The Lip Dub Committee of about 40 students worked on the decorations, logistics and fundraising for the event and more than 60 students turned up at 6:30 in the morning to decorate the school on the day of filming,” said Eshbach. “The HAHS Administration and staff supported and guided the “controlled chaos” as the entire population of Hamburg Area High School turned out to show spirit in three separate “takes” of the single-shot piece.”
Pagan said, “The morning started out very early. I was at the school at around 6:30 along with so many supportive volunteers! The stress set in to hang posters, streamers, and blow up balloons all before the students came in at 7:15. It was a stressful morning, but it was so worth it.”
Pagan said creating the lip dub was an amazing experience.
“Seeing everyone come together for two amazing teachers, brought tears to my eyes,” she said. “While I was filming and traveling through the hallways seeing all the energetic students, I couldn’t believe everything I had envisioned became a reality.”
Pagan said she and the many other students spent many hours on this project.
“I really do hope it shows the Hamburg community and surrounding communities that no one fights alone, that we are all in this together, and that we can all help those in need. I also hope it brings joy to the Argot and Ryan family, because this was all for them,” said Pagan.
“The video brings me joy!” said Argot. “I play it over and over during the tough times. The night before the filming I was so excited. It was a nice change to be happy with anticipation instead of dreading my next doctor appointment or medical test.”
When asked what she thinks about students putting this video together, she said, “I am so proud that so many students have their own personal reasons to “fight” for so many causes. I hope it encourages all to keep spreading hope and joy.”
Argot would like to thank students Pagan, Eberhardt, and Palko involved in the video production and all at Hamburg Area School District.
“Overall, the day was a success,” said Eshbach. “It was definitely a day in which students felt their personal power and school pride. The community really came together to be strong for our two teachers.”
Eshbach said the feeling within the school on filming day and since has been truly uplifting.
“Mrs. Argot has been touched by the strength of the event and we’ve been contacted by parents and members of the community who have expressed their pride in the students,” said Eshbach. “I think the goal was to turn a negative situation of the health issues of Mrs. Argot and Dr. Ryan into a positive message of strength in support of their fight. As a teacher, I feel it is part of my job to teach students that they matter and that they can make a difference in the lives of others. When I saw how upset students were about the struggles of their teachers, I encouraged them to do something, to act in a positive way to help. The community had already come together in support of Dr. Ryan with a spaghetti dinner and other fundraisers, so I had seen the power of those events to uplift.”
The video has been posted to Youtube and has been viewed 9,708 times, and counting. The lib dub video has been featured on WFMZ 69 News and has been talked about on the radio on Y102.
“The community has been so supportive. Reading all these nice comments on Facebook and seeing everyone share the video made me proud to be a Hawk,” said Pagan. “I’m so thankful for all the support and happy that I could bring a smile to Hamburg alumni and community.”
Eshbach said that the T-shirt fundraiser so far has brought in about $300 for the Argot and Ryan families. The penny wars and raffle fundraisers are on-going and will benefit the families of Dr. Ryan and Mrs. Argot.
“Thanks to all who helped in any way,” said Eshbach.
View the Hamburg Area High School 2017 “Fight Song” Lip Dub at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhGXfAU5Ru8&feature=youtu.be.