By James Mercadante
Students, friends and visitors huddled around an illuminated stage, feeling the sweltering heat from jumping, swaying and twerking to rapper Megan Thee Stallion, who brought “hot girl summer” to the Recreation Center on Nov. 19 at the College Union Board’s Fall Concert.
Before Megan, the Brooklyn-raised rapper/record producer Joey Bada$$ adrenalized the crowd with his chart-topping songs, like “Pull Up,” “Temptation” and “Devastated.”
However, there were two incidents where he stopped in the middle of his performance due to the crowd’s lack of energy, which prompted him to demand the audience to be more excited and restart over.
“He’s a great performer,” said Dean Zindacki, a concert visitor. “But I don’t think he was at his full potential tonight.”
Despite some criticism, his performance was favored by the audience.
When Megan took the stage, a refreshing energy surged through the crowd.
The rapper gained a tremendous amount of media attention this year with her first full-length project, “Fever,” with hit songs like “Cash Shit” and “Simon Says,” and her official trademarked phrase “hot girl summer” that circulated endless tweets and Instagram captions.
Audience members donned themselves in accessories and fashion with animal prints, neon-colored textiles, bedazzled cowboy hats and flashing sequins, which emulated the wild energy the rapper represented.
The hot girl coach opened her setlist with the track, “Realer,” which had the crowd immediately shouting and screaming the lyrics while she shook her glutes, patted her crotch and playfully stuck out her tongue.
In her leather shorts and cropped sweatshirt, Megan stressed the significance of sexual liberation through her lyrics and dance moves, encouraging others to come on the stage to “really throw that shit” and “bust it open like a freak.”
Her encouragement solicited hips rotations, backflips and leg splits from the selected participants on stage, which impressed both Megan and the crowd.
Her performances of songs like “Big Ole Freak” and“Sex Talk” gratified the dancing listeners.
“I feel like she’s all about female empowerment and getting an education, but also having fun,” said Amanda Tarantino, a senior English and secondary education dual major.
Female empowerment was an evident theme in Megan’s performance, as she told her fans that the crowd was occupied with “college pussy” and “smart pussy,” reminding them they do not need to depend on a man in any capacity.
During her track, “Hot Girl Summer,” she bounced up and down to the lyrics “And who gon’ tell him that my bitch is getting her degree? / And when we say it’s Hot Girl Summer, we ain’t talkin’ ’bout degrees.”
Senior communication studies major Kat Menze helped coordinate the event, which was accomplished by contacting middle agents with desired artists and choosing based on availability/prices.
“I think the event went well with a larger crowd than expected and CUB is really happy with the outcome,” Menze said.
That night, the majority left the Recreation Center, breathing heavily from the booty-popping workout they pulled off and felt transformed into certified hotties; ones who were determined to exert hot degrees while receiving academic ones as well.
The concert rendered the experience unforgettable for many students, including senior psychology major Lindsey Seidman.
“I didn’t know who she was at first and I kept calling her Megan Thee Trainor till someone corrected me,” Seidman said, laughing. “But I’m glad I went to see her because I thought she put on a great performance.”
Ultimately, Tarantino embraced Megan’s lyrics and personality, along with the rest of the crowd.
“She was so humble and down to earth, but also hot as hell,” she said.