W&M officially breaks 'Thriller' dance record

  • Official notificationIt's official: William & Mary students have broken the Guinness World Record for the most people doing the Michael Jackson's "Thriller" dance simultaneously in one location.

    Official notification
  • ThrillerStudents perform the dance number from Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video in the Sunken Garden April 19 in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record.

    Photo by Stephen Salpukas

    Thriller
  • ThrillerA student dressed like a zombie performs the dance number from Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video in the Sunken Garden April 19.

    Photo by Stephen Salupkas

    Thriller
  • ThrillerStudents perform the dance number from Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video in the Sunken Garden April 19 in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record.

    Thriller
  • ThrillerEven an injured leg couldn't keep this student from participating in the event.

    Photo by Stephen Salpukas

    Thriller
  • ThrillerStudents perform a move from the dance during the Sunday afternoon event.

    Photo by Stephen Salpukas

    Thriller
It's official: William & Mary students, faculty and staff have broken the Guinness World Record for the most people doing the Michael Jackson's "Thriller" dance simultaneously in one location.

Kevin Dua, a soon-to-graduate senior who organized the April 19 event, received official word Friday morning via the Web site login he received from Guinness after submitting the paperwork.

"I got up this morning and randomly check it without thinking anything, and there, right in my face, was, ‘Congratulations,'" he said.  "I'm pretty sure I read it like five times."

Dua said that they passed the record with the exact number of people they submitted on the paperwork, 242.

"The fact that they counted every single member means that no one was disqualified or slighted," he said. "So anyone who was there that day can appreciate the fact that they helped break the world record for our college."

He added, "It's a very great feeling."

However, Dua said for him, it's more than a personal accomplishment. He appreciates all of the people who helped train the dancers with him and all of the students who "took a break from their hectic, daily William & Mary lives to just have some fun." He was impressed with how the group interacted during the rehearsals and dance and cherished the experience, whether they were going to break a record or not.

"The fact that this is something they can even more appreciate now, for me that's an even better feeling," said Dua.

Guinness will send Dua an official certificate soon. He said that he is going to donate it to the College.

"I'm just happy that it actually went through and that everyone can appreciate this for as long as we're able to hold onto it," he said. "Overall, I'm just happy for everyone who helped out and everyone who encouraged the entire event since day one. So, yeah, it's a good feeling overall for the College."