By: Christine LaFrancesca, Staff Writer
Last Tuesday, the Towson Alcohol Peer Education Program teamed up with Tri Delta sorority to host their first Open Mic Night in PAWS.
Health Educator at the Counseling Center, Allison Frey, said she hopes that with the support of students, the counseling center can continue running open mics on a regular basis.
“This is our first open mic and the turnout is incredible,” Frey said. “We’d love to make this a yearly thing, possibly even every semester. We expected to have a lot of really talented people want to be involved but, this is amazing.”
Sophomore and English major Aanachl Patrick read an excerpt from an original piece titled, “Cardboard Boxes.” Patrick expressed the anxiety and panic that might accompany any performer once they are face-to-face with an audience.
“I was really nervous and honestly so panicky once I got on stage,” Patrick said. “I haven’t performed in over three years, so I feel like I didn’t do the best possible job once I was on stage. Reading from such a personal story about abandonment might have not been the best choice for me. I think that’s why my hands were shaking so much.”
Patrick emphasized that practicing and rehearsing is the key to performance success.
“Advice to anyone who is thinking about getting on a stage: Please make sure you’re ready,” Patrick said. “Practice in front of your friends or family if you can. It’ll help tremendously and help calm last minute panic nerves.”
Sophomore JT Crestwell, aka “Acrylic Matter,” is a guitarist, singer and solo performer who sang two original songs, “Ceiling” and “Need Your Love.”
“I started playing at around ninth grade,” Crestwell said. “I still get nervous performing, but it’s an amazing kind of nervous, you know?”
Crestwell explained the importance of trial and error and going with your gut.
“Anyone who wants to perform, they should just go for it,” Crestwell said. “You have to try your most vulnerable stuff and see what works. Some of it might be amazing, some might be awful. You won’t know until you try it on a crowd.”
Graduate student Megan Murray assisted in the coordination of Open Mic Night and was ecstatic about the turn out. She hopes to continue drug and alcohol education through sober events.
“We want to show students that they don’t have to drink or do drugs to have fun,” Murray said. “We want to give students a creative space to be sober, have fun and express themselves to their fullest, positive potential.”
Students interested in performing at the next Open Mic Night can contact Allison Frey for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.