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SUPB unveils new concert series

January 26th, 2012

Student Union Programming Board decided the same old, same old needed to be spiced up a bit.

Instead of bringing a big-name artist to campus for the annual Spring Concert, SUPB’s executive board has created the Carroll Spring Series, an on-campus and off-campus string of concerts.

“We decided to change it up,” said Cassie Pacer, SUPB’s major events coordinator. “We want to satisfy the needs of everyone of various different genres.”

In years past, the Spring Concert Committee planned and held the concert in the DeCarlo Varsity Center, coordinating security, ticket sales and gym preparation – among other things – for the event. Past recent acts included T-Pain, Jack’s Mannequin, Sean Kingston, Chamillionaire, Minus the Bear and Neon Trees.

However, past concerts held at JCU have been very poorly attended. Only 400 attended in 2010.

This year, SUPB is buying tickets to concerts in Cleveland and providing them to students. More than likely, according to Student Union’s Vice President for Programming Taylor Horen, the tickets will be offered at a discounted rate. Students and local bands can also audition to take part in on-campus concerts that will take place throughout this semester. And will take place Feb. 6-8.

Pacer said the goal of the new series is to show JCU students Cleveland’s downtown life.

“A lot of students don’t really ever get the opportunity to get down there,” she said. “And then we want to bring Clevelanders to John Carroll.”

The concerts SUPB is planning to get tickets for include Eric Church on Feb. 24 at Cleveland State University’s Wolstein Center, The Black Keys on March 20 at Quicken Loans Arena and Hot Chelle Rae on April 18 at the House of Blues. SUPB is also trying to get tickets for the Red Hot Chili Peppers concert on June 2 at Quicken Loans Arena.

“We’ve kind of seen in the past two or three years that what we’ve been doing isn’t working, so we figure, ‘why not go down another route?’” said Horen. “[We] might as well try it out [and] take advantage of what we have in the area because Cleveland has so many music vendors and venues for great concerts like these […] And if we can spend our money on tickets for better concerts, we might as well do that.”

Horen also cited the experience of going to a concert as a reason for the change.

“When you have it in your school’s gym, you can have lights, you can have a lot of people there to try and create the atmosphere,” she said, “but I feel like it’s better when you’re around the public and at a different venue. Just being able to get off campus and go somewhere kind of helps us out. We don’t have to create the atmosphere. It’s [to] get people excited [and] whether they like the music or not, they’re going to want to go out somewhere.”

Junior Elizabeth Sangdahl said she’s excited about the change in concert format, particularly the opportunity to see The Black Keys in concert.

“This will be the one concert I really want to go to,” she said.

Sangdahl also is in favor of the on-campus concerts. “That could potentially be kind of cool,” she said.

Sophomore River Onwudinjo is skeptical of the off-campus idea.

“We don’t know what kind of seats they’re offering,” he said.

SUPB will also provide transportation in some form, either via RTA or a bus, according to Horen.

For more information regarding the series, or to audition for the on-campus part of the program, contact Pacer at cpacer14@jcu.edu.