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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

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Spring Concert performers announced

Alim-Karim Kamara ’20, known as LiMM, performs a song for the spring concert auditions. PHOTO: MITCHELL SHIELDS ’22/THE HAWK

Concert committee holds first student opener contest

For the first time, the Spring Concert Executive Board held a contest to select the student openers for the university’s Spring Concert. After all the contestants performed, the committee announced that Blck Chld, a singer/songwriter, will be performing at Saxbys, DJ duo TyPham and Joe Leo will take the preshow and rapper LiMM and dance duo the Sweeney Sisters will open on stage in Michael J. Hagan ’85 Arena.

The event was held in the Perch on March 3 and was followed by the announcement of the 2019 Spring Concert headliners, Sean Kingston and DJ Pauly D. 

Ten different student acts came to compete for three different positions: coffee house (at Saxbys), preshow (outside of Hagan) and main stage (inside of Hagan). 

Taylor Geiger ’21, co-chair of the Spring Concert Executive Board, said the committee wanted to get the campus more involved in the selection of the openers. 

“We feel like it is the students who make up this amazing student-run organization and amazing performance that we have in April,” Geiger said. “We would love to have more input on it so it is not a secluded decision.”   

Nayo Walters ’22, known as Blck Chld, is a singer/songwriter who competed at the contest and will be playing in the coffee house position. 

Walters said she has been singing for about eight years and has performed casually in the Perch, so her friends encouraged her to try out. 

Walters sang an original song while playing the guitar. 

“Everyone tells me that I have a little coffee shop vibe,” Walters said. “I used to perform in coffee shops in high school, it is kind of my thing; now I get to do it on a bigger platform.” 

Alim-Karim Kamara ’20, known as LiMM, will be performing on stage in Hagan before the headliners. He said he liked having the student opener contest rather than just video submissions, because it allowed students as well as the committee to see how acts would perform on stage.

“I feel like this was the best way to go about it, because not only were we able to see all the different talents, but students also get a glimpse of who would be the student opener,” Kamara said. 

In the past, students sent videos to the executive board, and board members decided on the openers. At the competition, a panel of judges, Megan Azzalina, assistant director of Student Leadership and Activities, Michael Miranda ’22 and Alexis Wilson ’19, made the decision.

“Through this contest, the board was hoping to get the campus more involved in the decision and to utilize all of the talent that is on campus,” Geiger said. 

The members of the executive board advertised the contest on social media as well as monitors around campus, encouraging students to reach out to the board if they knew someone with a talent that should be showcased. 

Videos were still required for the first round. The board narrowed down the submissions to the acts that performed at the contest.  

Taylor Sweeney ’19, member of the executive board and coordinator of student openers is part of the Sweeney Sisters, who were selected to open the event, along with LiMM. Taylor Sweeney and her sister, Jordan Sweeney ’21 also opened for T-Pain at the 2018 Spring Concert.

Taylor Sweeney said because she was a competitor herself, she had no say in who was chosen in the contest, only in whose initial submissions got them into the contest.

“[We pick] people that you can tell put effort into their submission,” Taylor Sweeney said. “Whether it is a video they made or they sent in their songs or something. This way you know its an original, so you know it’s not something that they pulled together last minute.”

At the contest, the panel of judges said they were looking for three criteria in the performers: quality of content, creativity and entertainment. With this criteria in mind, the judges decided where each act would perform. 

The 2019 Spring Concert will be held on April 10 in Hagan Arena. 

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