Cheer the Count! is an Unstoppable Voters Project – a series of Center for Artistic Activism supported works that ensure every vote is counted in the 2020 U.S. election, relieve tension, and build healthy institutions in the aftermath.

Cheer the Count!

Ready? Ok! The Cheer the Count toolkit provided local activists or enthusiasts with tools to cheer on election workers and bring a pep-rally spirit to the process of patience and waiting for votes to be counted. No formal training in cheerleading was necessary: Cheer squads were formed by activist groups, friends, neighbors, and families. The toolkit included instructions on how to get your group together, how to design a uniform with items you already have at home, how to make your own pom poms, and simple chants and cheers. Marching bands were also welcome.

Created by Margaret McCarthy

Margaret McCarthy is an artist and thirteen-year San Franciscan who creates highly participatory performances that break down boundaries between audience and performer. She was eaten by a dragon and the dragon exploded.

McCarthy holds a B.A. in English and Theater from San Francisco State University. She has been an ensemble member of the San Francisco Neo-Futurists since April 2014, and Co-Artistic Director since January 2017. She was a 2017-2018 Public Imagination Fellow at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.

Unstoppable voters projects throughout the country relieve tensions and look to the future as every vote is counted

Experts predict that election returns will be slow and chaotic. Artists are preparing by answering critical questions: How can we counter tension, fear and potential violence? How do we inspire resilience and hope to defend the basic tenets of democracy? How do we respond with so many unknown factors?

The Center for Artistic Activism’s 2020 Unstoppable Voters Program has gathered a group of artists and culture makers who know how to transform emotions and  support a weary nation through early voting and the transfer of power during a challenging election season. As the nation awaits election results and their aftermath, projects will help folks relieve tension on the streets, at counting sites and in their homes, with Counting Cheerleaders, the creation of Social Emergency Response Centers, of-the-moment songs created and distributed by the Peace Poets, and continued performances by Emergency Circus and dancing mailboxes Delivering Democracy, among other projects.