Bryson Tiller Spring Concert: The process of it all

Adrianna Rochester – Special to the Southern News

Southern Connecticut State University’s organizations have gone above and beyond to give the students what they want for Spring Week 2016 with the possibility of putting together a media board to interview Bryson Tiller for his performance at SCSU on April 23.

Larry Tomascak, programing, marketing and event management director of the John Lyman Center for the Performing Arts said he’s working on gathering various media outlets on campus for a chance to interview the artist either before or after the concert.

“Contact has been made with Tiller’s team in regards of this idea, but nothing has been finalized yet,” said Tomascak.

It takes a lot to put on any kind of event, said Tomascak, especially one like the spring concert because there’s a competition between schools to not only pick the perfect date for the concert, but a completion to also get the most desirable artist and pray the date the university picks also works with the artist’s schedule.

He said, “My overall goal with this event is to give the students what they want and to present as many opportunities for the students to excel,” he said, “especially those who have helped with the event and those who are members of the media, so hopefully all works out with putting this media board together.”

Tomascak said he came on board with helping out with the concert as a way to support Eric LaCharity, associate director of Student Involvement—also known as Student Life– with finding an indoor venue to hold the concert.

Instead of hosting the concert outdoors, like it has been in the past years, the Special Events Committee—who is in charge with organizing Spring Week– is hosting the concert inside the Lyman Center, which seats about 1,500 people. The leading factor in making this decision, LaCharity said was because he and the committee thought having the venue indoors would fit Tiller’s performance style best.

LaCharity said every year Student Life puts together a Specials Events Committee, which consists of representatives from various organizations, such as Program Council, RHA, Student Government Association, Student Activities and more, to help prepare for Spring Week.

“All our focus shifts to Spring Week as soon as homecoming is done and we try to have the acts book and secure by time the campus closes for winter break,” LaCharity said, “but that doesn’t always happen.”

There have been times, like the spring concert last year, where the performing act didn’t get booked until mid-March. However, with this upcoming spring concert booking Tiller was fairly easy, LaCharity said. Student Life was able to secure his performance last year November.

LaCharity said the committee uses concert Ideas as their booking agency to help find and negotiate the terms and agreements between the university and the artist’s team. This has been the university’s method of booking acts for past spring concerts.

“I’m glad we booked Bryson Tiller when we did because since then his prices for a performance has really gone up,” said LaCharity.

Usually for a concert, especially this year’s concert, the budget is between $20,000-30,000, LaCharity said. Compared to the amount of money an artist would normally demand, that isn’t much money, which is why booking performers for the spring concert gets hard at times, but Tiller fit the budget range for the university.

“All our funding comes from the Student Government Association and from Student Activities, but each year our budget varies and we do our best to book an artist within the budget that’s presented to us.”

He said about 1,400 tickets were sold in total and 300-400 of those tickets were sold within the first day of their release. However, LaCharity was shocked at how fast the tickets sold out and wishes there was a way to accommodate the students, faculty, and the general public who were unable to purchase tickets, but still desire to attend the concert.

Both LaCharity and Tomascak agree that events like this take a lot of time and energy to put together, but seeing the excitement on the student’s faces and the overall outcome of the event is the best reward they could ask for.

Photo Credit: Adrianna Rochester – Special to the Southern News


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