By James Keller
For many musicians, playing in their parent’s garage and singing into an old tape recorder are as close as they’ll come to stardom. However, the Students’ Union–or more specifically, Vice-president Elect Events Chris Kerr–would like you to believe this does not have to be for campus talent.
For those of you who either didn’t care to vote last week–and there were many–let’s bring you up to speed. A small minority of students chose Chris Kerr as your new VP Events and decided the fate of up-and-coming events in the next year. Kerr promised "more exposure for student performers and talent." Sounds easy, right?
Well, no. Not exactly.
Our beloved Alix D’Archangelo, current VP Events, promised the same thing last year, but did anything materialize out of it? As far as anyone can tell, students were merely given a poorly advertised, under-used and seemingly non-existent student talent database and a handful of shows in the MacEwan Hall food court that may or may not have been campus bands–typically were not.
What else could’ve been done? Perhaps D’Archangelo should have advertised the database better or more appropriately informed students on its implementation. Or maybe she should have initiated more events featuring campus musicians–or at the very least, used students for entertainment in existing events.
It would be refreshing to have a slew of university students open for Staggered Crossing at BSD this year.
An open mic night in Max’s or at the Blue Banana Lounge is a good start. Either location is easy to organize since the SU owns both the spaces and the necessary equipment, seriously reducing the red tape of going through the University of Calgary or through some other venue.
The bottom line is this: promoting student talent is an excellent idea and falls under the portfolio of the VP Events. The only thing missing is our elected representatives actually getting it done.
The biggest student showcase to date this year has been Unplugged, put on by Busking for Smiles last week. Although the SU’s logo does appear on the posters, it is surely proof positive that if students want to get exposed, they’re on their own.
Don’t give up yet, though. This doesn’t have to be the end. The new SU VPs take office very shortly and that means a whole new year. Hopefully, Kerr will see not only the demand but also the excellent opportunity to give hopeful performers a shot in the limelight.
If not, then play real loud–the new SU offices are a long way from your basement.