Hey look, free art…

By Cecilia Salomone

Arts and Life Editor

DURING MY TIME as Arts & Life editor for our publication, I’ve had to attend a lot of campus events, primarily concerts and plays. I’ve also been responsible for finding writers to cover other events, which have included lectures, art exhibits, and dance performances. Our campus is full of talent and creativity within its student body, and apparently has enough money to bring consistently great entertainment from outside. This is great, right? I mean, never a dull moment? 

Well, not exactly. While I’ve noticed that student-performed events (things like the One-Acts, or DUwop concerts) are sometimes well-attended, events from non-Denison groups or performers bring way smaller crowds. For example, a jazz concert I reviewed about a month ago, while excellent, probably had about five other Denison students in the packed recital hall; everyone else was decidedly too old for college and presumably a resident of Granville or Licking County. 

I’ve been to multiple events where attendance was sparse, even embarrassingly so. This is particularly hard to see at events organized by student organizations, for I have had prior experience dealing with this from the “other side.” Prior to assuming an editorial position at The Denisonian, I was on Relay for Life’s committee, serving as public relations co-chair for two years. I cannot tell you how much work the committee puts in to that incredibly worthy cause, nor can I explain the frustration at seeing a much smaller crowd than I had anticipated after so much planning.

Additionally, getting students interested in the event was no easy task. This may be because Denison student seemingly have, as my mother says, 101 things to do. Nearly all of my friends tell me how booked their lives are, and the advice I give to freshmen I meet is “Don’t bite off more than you can chew.” I’ve even felt it in my own life, wondering why I’ve taken on two extracurricular, a campus job, a summer work search, and constantly panicking about my life after Denison, all in addition to, you know, actually being a student and maintaining something like a social life.

That being said, if you see something you’d like to check out on campus, go for it. If you and your friends find yourselves idle, look around. There’s normally something to do. Actually, no, there’s always something to do. Campus organizations work extremely hard to bring you entertainment, and it’s almost always free.

We also have the added benefit of approaching the end of the school year, which means that our  senior South Quad-oriented friends are going to be going out with their traditional bang.  Whether it be an art show, a Herrick Hall musical performance or a dance recital, opportunities abound to both enculturate yourself as well as actively witness the culmination of four years’ worth of blood, toil, teas and sweat.

Additionally, please support campus artists, whether they’re an a capella group or a comedy troupe. Get real, it’s Denison, so you probably know at least one of the people involved. Check out a band that sounds interesting, or see a play, or putter around South Quad for artwork to see. At what other point in your life will you be able to find free art, in all its forms, all the time?

Photo courtesy of Nelson Dow, The Denisonian