By Brianna Ross @itsbriross
Surrounded by walls plastered with flyers and announcements, tables are filled with talkative students. A Starbucks kiosk occupies the center of the room and in the front of rows of empty seats stands a single microphone, waiting for a brave soul to showcase their talent.
At 7 p.m. a student approaches the stand and performs a spoken word.
The open mic night begins.
The poetry club hosted an open mic night inside of the LPC café on March 1. This event was open for the public to attend and to perform.
A small crowd gathered to support their peers as they faced their fears and put their verbal talents on display.
For most, the thought of performing in front of an audience is utterly terrifying. It takes a lot of guts to stand in front of a crowd of people, let alone do a performance of any kind.
Though the turnout was small, the open mic night served as a place for students to put any apprehensions aside and practice their performance skills in a more intimate and inviting setting.
Andrew Europa, poetry club member and host of the evening, noted that the open mic night hosted last semester had a much better turnout because there were more members in poetry club at that time.
The small turnout however, didn’t discourage people from stepping up to the mic and performing.
Europa kicked off the night with an original poem that challenged society’s expectations of what masculinity should look like. His poem pushed the boundaries of what most people believe is how a typical man should act and carry his self. In response to society, Andrew says, “there ain’t nothing wrong with a dude who likes flowers.”
As the night went on, one of the most profound performances of the evening came from the timid voice of Sheila Nam.
Nam, currently in her second year on campus, took a leap of faith and performed for her very first time in front of a live audience.
At first Nam was just there to watch and support her friend, but with a little convincing from club member Europa, she decided to close out the night with a harmonious piece.
She was ambitious and selected the song “Million Years Ago,” from Adele’s most recent album for her breakout performance.
Though you could sense the nervousness in her voice, when Nam belted out the chorus of the song, her melodic voice stunned the audience.
With a voice like hers, many wondered why she hadn’t performed in public before. Ultimately, Nam decided to perform tonight because as she said, “the crowd was smaller this time and it’s much less intimidating than performing in front of a full room.”
When asked if she had any words of advice for other people who may be performing for their first time, Nam simply said, “just be you.”