LoveTU will celebrate self-love through art, song, dance and spoken word by Temple University students in the Student Center Underground on Tuesday at 8 p.m.
At the event, students can relate the performances to self-love in their own lives, said Brittany Robinson, the lead coordinator of this year’s LoveTU.
“Performance actually can help people overcome challenges and things,” said Robinson, who is also the wellness education program coordinator at the Wellness Resource Center.
The event brings about a sense of community among students and performers, Robinson added.
LoveTU was created to replace “The Vagina Monologues,” a play written by Eve Ensler in 1994 that tells the stories of women’s encounters with experiences like sexual assault and domestic abuse, last year. Temple students previously performed the play, but the WRC canceled it after feedback from students said it lacked inclusivity for all genders, race and sexualities.
“Folks told us that certain intersectionalities might have been felt excluded from that event,” Robinson said. “We really took it seriously.”
Robinson said that people of all gender and intersectional identities are free to participate and share their stories at LoveTU. Performers are also welcome to choose types of performances that are most comfortable for them.
This is the second annual LoveTU event and, based on a survey conducted after the first event, 100 percent of attendees are expected to return, Robinson said.
“It was kind of a natural progression for us to be able to create a new event and be able to highlight voices that might not have previously been heard,” Robinson added.
The WRC has taken steps to make LoveTU as inclusive as possible by reaching out to student organizations with missions and visions of promoting inclusivity, love and resilience, Robinson said.
Pitch, Please, an a capella group that advocates for the LGBTQIA+ community, and Hosting Our Own Talks, a social justice discussion group, and Temple Gospel Ministries are among the organizations that will perform at this year’s LoveTU.
Pitch, Please will be performing three songs, titled, “Past Lives,” “Blind Faith” and “My My My / Feelings!” Temple Gospel Ministries will perform a song titled, “Love.”
Cierra Cubero, a senior media studies and production major and the president of Temple Gospel Ministries, said that the group tries to break bad stereotypes of religion — like being judgemental or negative — by prioritizing personal connections with God and showcasing love.
“We just want everyone to feel connected,” Cubero added. “Everyone is welcome to sing along with us. We’re excited, and we’re ready to just sing.”
Temple Gospel Ministries uses worship in the form of song, dance and mime to help people overcome challenges.
“We can love everybody,” Cubero said. “Our goal is to spread the love of faith to everyone on the campus and just to be that support that every student needs especially with everything going on, whether it’s just being stressed or classes, family.”
In addition to these performances, Tyler School of Art students will draw live during the event. Their artwork will be raffled off to audience members for free.
Sarah Woods, a sophomore painting major, is a returning artist to this year’s event.
“I’m just creating art with whatever moves me in the situation,” she said.
“When I’ve been part of something, I’ve felt love in that situation,” Woods added. “In that moment, you’re open to different ideas and different perspectives that you may not know, and that can really just open your mind to the beauty of culture and the beauty [that] everybody’s different and being different is OK.”