By Morgan Lubner
Nervous student performers and antsy friends gathered in the Brower Student Center on Friday, Sept. 18, for the first student soloist night of the semester.
Hosted by CUB Alt, the event gives aspiring musicians the chance to gain experience performing in a supportive, relaxing environment. Three soloists signed up to perform and showcase their various talents in front of peers and parents, some for the first time ever.
The first artist was Jade Tungul, a freshman communications major who sang and played her guitar for the crowd. She performed six songs in total, five covers and one original piece she wrote just the week before.
Tungul has only been performing for around one or two years, but has been playing guitar since eighth grade and singing since she was seven years old.
“I thought it could be a fun opportunity and it was,” Tungul said, who discovered the event on Facebook. “It was really rewarding.”
Following Tungul, Meghan Clark, a senior elementary education and English double major, graced the stage. As the president of iTunes, an a cappella group on campus, she has experience with performing, but this was her first time doing it solo.
Clark sang songs from a variety of artists, including Ingrid Michaelson, A Fine Frenzy and Elvis Presley, surprising the audience with her versatility. In between songs, Clark joked with the crowd, eliciting many laughs, despite proclaiming that she is not in fact a comedian.
After finishing “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Presley, Clark remarked how that was the best she had ever felt singing — ever.
“It was the craziest feeling,” she said.
Clark has been performing since third grade when she discovered the Cheetah Girls and decided she wanted to be just like Adrienne Bailon.
“Go for it,” Clark said to aspiring musicians in the crowd. “Prepare ahead of time and absolutely get up and try it.”
The closing performer was Andrew Avallone, a sophomore mechanical engineering major who is also a self-taught musician. He brought two guitars on stage with him, an acoustic and an electric. He explained to the crowd that he bought a guitar on an impulse only a year ago, three days before his freshman move-in day. Since then, he has taught himself how to play and create melodies to pre-recorded backtracks.
That night was his first time ever performing, contributing to the theme of the night.
“I love it, I really enjoy it. And emotions come out of the guitar when I play, whether I like them or not,” Avallone said. “The first time I had that feeling, I fell in love with it.”
CUB Alt puts on 12 shows a semester, the student soloist night being the first of those held in the Student Center instead of the Rat. Of the 12 events to be put on this semester, three are soloist nights and four are band nights. Student comedy nights and spoken word nights are also thrown into the mix to provide scenes that even more students would be interested in.
The next CUB show to look out for will take place on Friday, Sept. 25. The country duo Kingston, from Nashville, is coming to the College and will be performing in the Decker Social Space.