By: Raquel Alfaro, Contributing Writer and McKenna Graham, Arts & Life Editor
Towson University’s Campus Activities Board (CAB) coordinated with New Student Programs to put on the annual Fall Fest concert Sept. 1, featuring rapper Waka Flocka Flame and dance-rock band DNCE.
However, this year’s concert had an unexpectedly low attendance, due in part to its early scheduling in the first week of school, according to CAB Director Alasia McDonald.
Of the 2,500 expected attendees, about 1,000 tickets were sold. In the past, Fall Fest has been scheduled later in the semester; however, this year, it was scheduled earlier as part of LaborStay weekend and New Student Programs’ “Welcome to TU” programming, according to McDonald.
“Some wisdom I’m going to pass on is to let the new [CAB] director know, ‘don’t let them change the date, and let them know it wasn’t a good idea,’” McDonald said.
The Towerlight has reached out to New Student Programs for comment, and will update this story online with more information as it becomes available.
At the concert, Waka Flocka kicked off the night with a performance of his single, “Round of Applause,” as he worked his way off-stage and entered the crowd amid screams, cheers and phone camera flashes.
He then made his way back to the stage to cover “Turn Down for What.” To cool off the crowd, Waka Flocka poured water on the front row. The rapper ended his performance with “No Hands,” electrifying the arena as the crowd rapped along with him.
The crowd remained energetic as DNCE took the stage. Although the group has only had a few hits so far, fans of Joe Jonas supplied even more enthusiasm.
“I love Joe Jonas,” freshman Paige McLaughlin said. “I’m ready for an incredible night. He was my favorite Jonas growing up.”
DNCE had an electrifying vibe, and Jonas showed off his dance moves while the crowd sang along with his performance of their single, “DNCE.” To close their set, DNCE performed its summer hit, “Cake by the Ocean.”
Despite being considered artists of two entirely different genres, DNCE and Waka Flocka meshed well and managed to keep the crowd’s energy high and hyped.
“I thought that both artists put on a good show,” McDonald said. “Everyone who was there really enjoyed themselves.”
According to McDonald, one girl drove six hours from Virginia just to see DNCE; she was notified of the concert thanks to CAB’s strategy of posting about the concert in different fan groups on Facebook.
They also marketed by reaching out to nearby schools like Goucher and Johns Hopkins University to ask if they could advertise the event on different campuses in the area in order to boost ticket sales.
McDonald remains undeterred by low sales, and says CAB has more concerts planned for the year because of Fall Fest’s early date and Tiger Fest’s late one.
“We’re going to be having an R&B concert in November and a country concert in March,” said McDonald. “We’re also going to be having our multicultural expo, which last year had student performers as well as larger performers, so hopefully that will be an international artist, if people like international and more diverse artists.”
As far as Tigerfest goes, planning will see a big change for this upcoming year’s concert. CAB plans to coordinate with the SGA to create a planning committee that will help to organize and prepare for the event.
“This year, there’s going to be a lot more hands involved in planning Tigerfest, and a lot more organizations on campus are going to be involved with the planning.” McDonald said, “So it’s going to look a lot different from past years.”
The Towerlight will continue to update this story.