U of C looking for lyricist

By Roman Zakaluzny

University of Calgary Administration, in conjunction with the Students’ Union and the Alumni Association, is funding a lyric writing contest in hopes of establishing an official U of C song.

Sound corny? Not at all, according to U of C Director of Marketing Ann MacDiarmid.

"Along with the coat of arms and our yellow, red and black colours, we needed some symbols," said MacDiarmid, whose department is helping organize the effort.

Advertisements for the contest have run in various university papers over the past few weeks. They call on students to submit lyrics for a song that could be, "sung in the bleachers at Dinos games as well as performed by our orchestras and choirs at convocations."

"We’re not putting any money in whatsoever," said SU President Rob South. "We donated some paid advertising. Administration is giving a lot in terms of human resources and organization."

The Alumni Association is also providing the $500 prize for the winning entry.

Reaction from students is mixed.

"A song for the bleachers and orchestra? It doesn’t go hand-in-hand," said Vice-president of the Music Undergraduate Society Megan Mitchell. The fifth-year saxophone student added that she may write a song anyway because, "five hundred bucks would be pretty good."

"It’s an awesome idea," said first-year Education student and Dinos soccer striker Rajiv Mathur. He believes the university would gain much from a school song, particularly after seeing how other schools show pride.

"When [our team] goes to smaller schools like the Univeristy of Lethbridge, they make it more of an event," he said. "We lack school spirit."

Self-professed Dino fan and third-year Kinesiology student Stacey Nelson echoed Mathur’s statements, and added that she would even sing the song, provided she was not alone.

"Yeah, I would sing it," said Nelson, "but not if I had to go up to a mic and do it, though."

As to whether the idea of a university song may be dated, MacDiarmid disagreed.

"I don’t think it’s archaic," she said, "I think it’s pride. Nobody’s going to force you to learn it."

MacDiarmid added that incoming students at U of C 101 in the fall may be the first students to learn the verses.

"Nevertheless, the song would be brought in gradually," said MacDiarmid.

"It’s the trendy thing now," said fourth-year Music student Natalie Chopin, who had doubts about the song’s timelessness. "Five years from now, that same ad will be in that same paper."

But even Chopin agreed that writing the lyrics for such a song might be fun.

"This would be an interesting, kind of fun project to do," she said. "It’s like high school."

Submissions may be handed in to the SU office by Mar. 15, 2000.

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