Feedback, funding factor into Union Board's concert selection


Union Board's Mike Posner concert may have lasted five hours, but it took nearly a year to come to fruition.

Wanting to meet the demands of the student body, Union Board starting receiving feedback following last spring's Jack's Mannequin concert, asking who students were interested in seeing perform at DePauw.

The organization surveyed students last spring through three different mediums: e-services, a Google document that was emailed to students, and paper surveys distributed in the Hub.

Junior Peter Haigh, co-president of Union Board, said the surveys were part of an attempt to give the students more of a voice in selecting the act for the spring concert.

"That's something we were trying to improve on; actually finding out what the students want and giving us feedback and then acting on it," Haigh said.

Senior Lana Colvin, another co-president of Union Board, said she received a lot of feedback from students expressing interest in Posner once the surveys were sent out.

"I received emails about bringing Mike Posner," Colvin said. "There was a Facebook group started up for bringing Mike Posner and so that was the name I was hearing."

After composing a list of potential artists, Union Board then sent out a bid to the artists in mind, one at a time, in order to prevent any potential double-booking.

According to Colvin, there were other artists above Posner, but conflicts arose with scheduling or budget constraints.

"We just so happened to get lucky," Colvin said. "We begged [our superiors] for more open dates and just so happened to get one where Mike Posner was free. And since he was one of the highest people [from the survey] we just chose him."

Uzoma Oluka, assistant director of campus activities and advisor to Union Board, handles legal matters like drawing up the contract and also assists in other event logistics.

The varying performances and larger scale of the concert this semester led to high pre-show ticket sales and Haigh said Union Board expected the concert to sell out.

"One thing a little different that we haven't had is we have two, arguably, three really big artists. We haven't had a show this big before," Haigh said.

Posner and DePauw handled hiring security for the event, so Union Board's primary goal was to entertain the student body. Money raised from $10 ticket sales, were partially directed to providing water and snacks for students at the concert. Some of the money also went toward providing courtesy items, like towels, for the performers.

Union Board prepared "green rooms" for Posner and the other perfomers, but Posner stayed at a secret location, not on DePauw's campus, for his safety.

Union Board held a small concert in the fall so that it could host a much larger concert this semester.

The outcome of Saturday's concert will influence Union Board's decision regarding small and large concerts versus average concerts both semesters.

"We're going to put that idea on the table, but it's up to the allocations board because they're the ones who have the money," Haigh said.