If you did not attend the first annual
this past weekend, you should definitely make a note to go next year. It’s hard to call the festival a complete success, because it lacked one major factor necessary for success at these kinds of events—attendance. However, the festival was successful in almost every other aspect.Festivities were scheduled to begin at 1 p.m., but sound-checking continued until 1:40 p.m., at which point Funktion—a jazzy instrumental group featuring a talented saxophonist—took the stage. They set the tone for the whole day, which was relaxed, goofy, and just plain fun. The music festival was like summer vacation in the middle of October: carefree students lounged on the grass in the sunlight while others occasionally danced near the stage with their friends.The music itself was incredible. Student bands from all 5Cs were each given 30 minutes on stage to rock out to the crowd of less than 100. No one appeared daunted by the lack of audience, however, as each band, singer, or a capella group helped contribute to the fun atmosphere. The variety of music was impressive: there was jazz, instrumental, rock, ska, and, of course, a lot of hip-hop and rap. Being a fan of all genres, my first response to every band was, “Wow, they’re really good!” The students all seemed to want to be on-stage and, once up there, enjoyed their moment in the spotlight.The host—Junior Francis—was also very strong and enthusiastic. He encouraged people to get their friends to attend the event, and expressed love for every band that performed.At 4:30 p.m., dinner was available with a meal card swipe outside of Collins. The BBQ dinner strengthened the summer-vacation-in-the-middle-of-the school-year vibe of the festival. The food was typical dining hall food—nothing impressive—but it did help draw a larger crowd of students and kept attendees close to the music.Once darkness fell, the attendance also grew in expectation of the headliners—The Cool Kids. Shouts of “Cool!” were responded to by an enthusiastic crowd with “Kids!” over and over as the Chicago duo wowed students during their hour-long performance.There are a few aspects of the festival that could be improved upon. First of all, the area was fenced in, and the entrances were inconveniently located away from the path of most students. I started to find this very inconvenient since I had to come and go multiple times. This setup most likely did not improve attendance, and made getting food and going to the bathroom—both located outside of the fence—a hassle. Also, many items, such as water bottles and large tote bags, were not allowed. I would recommend a search of bags for security purposes rather than prohibiting them. At least that way students would have been able to bring homework, and thus be productive while still enjoying the music.It is safe to assume that next year’s music festival will be an even greater event as word spreads—and it will hopefully become something that students can look forward to.“It was really good and had a lot of potential [for] becoming a great tradition among the 5Cs,” said Willa Oddleifson SC ‘13.Hopefully in years to come students will look back on this first annual 5-C Music Festival and think of the volunteers, students, bands, and audience members who contributed to the creation of such an enjoyable tradition.