Letter to the editor

 One of the most anticipated announcements on college campuses each year is the reveal of the Spring Concert. At Framingham State University, this stands true. Yet, the students of FSU have sometimes been disappointed by the talent selection, resulting in low ticket sales. For this reason, the Student Union Activities Board (SUAB), the organization that plans the annual concert, decided to move in a new-direction with this year’s Spring Concert. This year, SUAB will bring a nationally recognized comedic act to campus. Stars of MTV’s “Girl Code” and “Guy Code,” Carly Aquilino, Chris DiStefano and Matt Broussard will be taking the DPAC stage on April 14th. Many have questioned why SUAB chose this act. As the current President of SUAB, I am reaching out to the FSU community to explain this choice. I hope by clarifying the selection process, I can better explain the tough decisions made and why Beyoncé will never be able to perform at our Spring Concert.

Months before the announcement is made, members of SUAB begin the process of researching talent for the Spring Concert. SUAB has $25,000 to spend on talent, as approved by the Student Government Association. This does not include other event costs, such as openers, lighting, sound, security, agent fees and other rentals. If SUAB decides to host a musical act, this budget may afford someone who has only one or two popular songs on the radio or a “throwback” artist that is no longer on the radio. In the past, our concerts have been Hello Goodbye at $12,500, Lee Brice at $17,000, We the Kings at $12,000, and Jana Kramer at $25,000. Musical acts that are popular on the radio may cost over $50,000. For example, Fetty Wap is currently listed at $100,000, Ellie Goulding at $150,000, and Nikki Minaj at $500,000.

Other state colleges comparable to FSU’s size are allocated similar budgets. However, when compared to large state schools or private schools, FSU’s budget for the annual concert is not comparable. In addition, the DPAC venue is simply not large enough to accommodate high-priced performers and their technical needs. Also, our close proximity to Boston is a limitation, as performers are able to perform at larger musical venues and charge higher prices. Therefore, when SUAB makes the decision each year, we have to take all of these limitations into account and be realistic with the resources at hand.

Given the talent in our price range this year, we did not feel that any of the musical acts would be successful on our campus. Finding one genre that appeals to the majority of campus is becoming more and more challenging, as musical acts usually perform strictly one genre. If you do not like that genre, you are not apt to purchase a ticket to attend. This thought process is what has left DPAC with empty seats in the past. In opposition to this, the last large comedian SUAB brought to campus was Stephen Lynch in 2008 – DPAC sold out. Humor is a universal language, and even if you haven’t seen the shows on MTV, you’ll still be able to enjoy the show just the same. A ticket to see these MTV comedians on tour usually costs about $70 – yet for this show, it’s only $5.

Selecting the three comedians from MTV’s “Girl Code” and “Guy Code” was a way of allowing more students the chance to attend a show they would genuinely enjoy. We hope you will attend the show on April 14th. Tickets can be purchased in the MC Game Room for $5 each, 2 per FSU ID. As always, SUAB stands to program for the student body, so we’d love to hear how we can make your college experience even better! Feel free to e-mail us at suab@framingham.edu.

Sarah Cowdell

SUAB President 

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