WSIN holds annual Sinfest event
Tyler Korponai – Photo Editor
When entering the Student Center’s ballroom on Oct 29, one would be surprised to find a full band dressed as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a host of other iconic figures and Halloween decorations to top it off. It’s safe to say that it was anything but an ordinary night.
It was not an effortless or simple production. Sinfest, the annual production of WSIN, returned to Southern to bring the community to together to dress up and enjoy some music.
“This is my third year doing our annual concert,” said Elizabeth Voytershark, general manager of WSIN. “We’re trying to promote local bands and local music. It’s one of our community service events because its free and open to the public we’ve been doing it for the last 15 years.”
With several years of experience, and staff changing over the years, there is a chance to experiment with location and try out different approaches.
“We always do it around Halloween because our call number is WSIN, so ‘sin,’” said Elizabeth. “It goes along well. In the past we usually hold it in the ballroom. Last year we did it in the black room of the Lyman Center but it felt too underground and removed from the community. Now we’re back in the ballroom, but we decided to do half the ballroom to make the crowd closer together.”
The proximity between performers and crowd succeeded in creating this effect, facilitating a relationship fitting the theme of WSIN’s goal – being together. Bands playing at Sinfest featured pop-punk band Cometa, opening the show. After Cometa came psychedelic-funk Off the Dome, playing their second show as a band at Sinfest. To finish the night, headliner Bella’s Bartok, a muppet-punk band, performed mingling and playing inside the crowd.
“It’s our second time playing here,” said Rob Engengro, the drummer of Off the Dome. “It’s always a lot of fun.”
In addition to the bands, DJ Prodigy played music in between sets. Hosts Joe Amarante, Greg Gagliardi and Dan Zumpano performed skits, sometimes things got messy.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” said Joe with a laugh. “I got hit with a couple of whip cream pies, I forgot I had my hat on, but it’s okay.”
Delivering one of the most energetic sets of the night, headliner Bella’s Bartok came out ready to perform and bring the crowd as close together as possible. At one point, guitarist, vocalist, and clarinetist Chris ‘Fancy’ Kerrigan stepped out from behind the band’s stage space right into the crowd.
The unity and theatrics of their performance is the product of a lot of hard work from a band constantly in motion.
“I was so happy to join up,” said bassist and vocalist Daniel Niederhauser. “Started huffing it in October, got a new booking agent around February, we played around 14 festivals this summer. Every week, Thursday through Sunday, this is the first university we’ve played this year. We did an interview with Liz probably early summer, May or June. Our drummer, Crisco, had a class with her so everything happened from there.”
What came together was a night for music and bringing the community out.
“It was really nice,” said Gagiardi. “A lot of people came out it was a nice crowd in an intimate setting.”