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Valentine’s Day Dancing “Flash Mob” Style in Missoula

GRAPHIC: Montanans are dancing "flash mob" style in Missoula today, as part of the One Billion Rising campaign - calling for an end to violence against women.
GRAPHIC: Montanans are dancing "flash mob" style in Missoula today, as part of the One Billion Rising campaign - calling for an end to violence against women.
February 14, 2013

MISSOULA, Mont. - Up to 100 men and women will be putting on the moves today in Missoula as a Valentine's Day flash mob. They'll be dancing at the University of Montana Oval and Caras Park, as part of the international One Billion Rising project calling for an end to violence against women.

Tarn Ream, one of the event coordinators, said the focus on dancing transcends languages and cultures.

"For a lot of people, it's a very healing thing," Ream said, "so we're all dancing together on a global level and we're dancing with our community."

The reference to "one billion" comes from the campaign's claim that one billion women - that's one in three around the world - will be raped or beaten at some point in their lives. The flash mob performances are at noon on campus and 6 p.m. at Caras Park.

Ream said she has encountered some opposition and has fielded questions about whether the events will make people angry.

"This is just to bring the awareness there and show that we are strong," she explained. "We have some men dancing with us, too. They're there to support us."

Participants have practiced the flash mob dance for weeks, she added.

The song that will be highlighted in the dance, "Break the Chain," is available at https://soundcloud.com. The dance was choreographed by Debbie Allen.

Deborah Courson Smith/Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - MT