The Oxford Belles aim to raise funds to support Women’s Aid and Refuge
An all-female a cappella group led by law students from the University of Oxford has dropped a charity track to mark International Women’s Day.
The Oxford Belles today released Toxic in the deep (below), a mash-up of Toxic by Britney Spears and Adele’s Rolling in the Deep.
The girl group say they paired together the club and karaoke classics to “spark a conversation about emotional abuse this International Women’s Day”.
The accompanying music video is set in the grounds of the prestigious university and shows the ensemble all dressed in black as they tell the story of a woman leaving an abusive relationship. It was choreographed by the group’s co-president and law student Meg Beech.
“At the moment, you can’t escape stories about the Harvard sexual abuse scandals, Kanye tormenting Kim, and especially the fallout of #FreeBritney,” said Beech, who is in her final year studying law at Corpus Christi College, Oxford. “Combine those individual cases with the widespread worsening of domestic violence during lockdown, and it’s never been so important for women to speak out against their mistreatment.”
Beech is one of two law students in the Belles. Becca Nomafo is the group’s musical director who is also in her final year and a future trainee solicitor at Linklaters. Both law students are keen to “bring attention to an issue which is often dismissed or misunderstood by the courts”.
The Belles have also set up a fundraiser for survivors of domestic abuse, with the proceeds split equally between charities Women’s Aid and Refuge. They aim to raise £1,500 that will go towards providing “legal and emotional support for women escaping abuse”.
Established in 1995 to “combat the uni’s male-dominated music scene”, the Oxford Belles are wanting to spread their message of female empowerment across the country, including most recently at the United Nations COP26 Climate Change Conference in Glasgow. In 2017 the band released a cover of Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just Want To Have Fun(damental Rights), which caught the attention of the singer herself.
The Belles aren’t the only musically talented troupe at Oxford University. Legal Cheek has long-covered the anthems released by all-male a cappella group Out of the Blue, which is currently led by law student Darren Yang, alongside tenors Cameron Tweed and Solomon Chann. They recently took on Elton John’s Step Into Christmas.
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