Want to meet Macklemore & Ryan Lewis?

Here are the official ways to win meet and greet passes to the Macklemore & Ryan Lewis with opener YONAS show on April 8, 2013 at the Convocation Center at JMU. Each winner will get to bring a friend to … Continue reading

Why Center Stage Keeps Our Concerts Secret

Although we may have an artist contracted for some time, we are unable to announce who it is for a few months.
While sometimes it is difficult to keep this secret from our friends and classmates, there
are a few important reasons why we cannot release the name until closer to the show
date. One of the first reasons we have to keep the artist a secret is because of the signing
terms with most artists. Many contracts require us to keep their show silent until
they have a chance to announce their touring schedule. Another reason involving the
artists is for the sheer fact that anything can happen and they could cancel on us at the
last second. By announcing the performer closer to the date, we try to reduce that risk
of disappointment (for the students and the public relations side of UPB). Probably the
biggest reason we keep our concerts a secret is for a greater marketing and advertising
buzz. By keeping the concert a secret, we hope to create chatter among the student
community and increase the interest of the preforming artist. When I first came to JMU,
UPB would make a banner and announce the artist on Crazy Commons; however, over
the past few years UPB has worked to create the announcement into an event. Last year
UPB announced Passion Pit at the Headphone Disco, which required a lot of work and
planning but made for an exciting reveal. Once we sign with the artists, we will begin
strategizing the best way to announce their performance. So keep a look out and follow
the UPB Twitter and Facebook for any upcoming news and events regarding our new
artist and the reveal!

Elaine Lichtman, Center Stage Member
The #CONVO2013 show will be announced at Crazy Commons on February 19 at 12:17p!

And It’s The Best Day Ever…

As I sit down to write this blog post, I can’t help but catch myself smiling from cheek to cheek. This Saturday’s past show, The Campus Consciousness Tour featuring Wiz Khalifa, Mac Miller, and Mansions on the Moon was a huge success, and for all of the lucky ones who were able to attend, it was an absolutely amazing show!

Luckily for UPB members, we got to see the majority of the show for free in exchange for our hard work putting on the event. Whether it was giving up our Friday afternoon to build the stage, or showing up on Saturday morning at 8:00 AM to load in sound and equipment, if it weren’t for all of UPB’s dedication, the show would not have been as successful as it was!

But for some of us, we got more of an insider’s perspective on what goes on behind the scenes of a convo show. Along with three of my fellow committee members, Jeff, Audrey, and Becca, we were given the opportunity to be runners for the show. Basically, a runner is given backstage access as well as keys to a JMU vehicle for the sole purpose of serving the artists with whatever they may need throughout their stay at JMU. When I first was told that I had been chosen as a runner, I couldn’t imagine how the day would pan out. For all you fellow Taylors out there, we all know that Wiz rolls deep with quite an eclectic entourage.

We showed up at 8:00 AM on Saturday at the Convocation Center, ready and willing to be of help with whatever the day threw at us. The first thing on the agenda was to run a few errands to Wal-Mart, Martin’s, etc. to pick up food, towels, and drinks. Once we had completed that, it was time to set up for the Reverb Event on the commons. I drove my super awesome 12 passenger JMU van over to their tour bus, where we loaded up the equipment. The Reverb crew was extremely nice and down to earth, except they made fun of my driving skills at first! They kept joking around that Harrisonburg probably wasn’t well known for their driving school programs. To justify my driving skills, those huge JMU vehicles are hard to get used to driving, AND I had to parallel park! After a few trips around town, however, I was a pro. 🙂

Once we unloaded the equipment, Audrey and I took two of the Reverb crew members to Starbucks to get them coffee.  On the way there, Elliot and Davis told us a little bit more about Reverb and what they’re all about. For those of you that didn’t get a chance to stop by on the commons, I strongly suggest you check out their website! (www.reverb.org)  They’re an awesome non-profit organization that is devoted to helping large tours “Go Green”. They also use these tours as an opportunity for outreach, as they often put on events that help people to learn how they can help out the environment and make a difference.  So far they’ve done 100 tours, which is definitely something to be proud of, and it’s great for the environment!

Around 3 PM, Jeff and I went to go pick up “Gangsta Will”, Wiz’s tour manager.  After checking out the venue and having a brief meeting with production, we took Will and Wiz’s merch guy back to the hotel to sort merchandise for the show. Once that was all complete, we all headed back to Convo to set up the merchandise tables.  Audrey and I then took “Light”, one of Wiz’s merch guys, to Wal-Mart so he could pick up a few things while we bought ice for Reverb and other miscellaneous items. After that, it was show-time!

Mansions on the Moon opened up the show, and the crowd was definitely ready for a good time. Once they played their set, Mac Miller took the stage and the crowd went wild! At 8:45, it was time to go pick up Wiz Khalifa and the rest of his crew at their hotel, as his set started at 9:20. Jeff and I grabbed the keys to the van and headed off on our adventure!

We showed up at the bus outside the hotel, and after about 10 minutes, Wiz emerged with his tour manager, the rest of Taylor Gang, as well as his fiancé Amber Rose and her two friends. They were all pumped for the show, and Wiz was definitely ready to rock the stage. He didn’t seem nervous at all, as he was rapping off the top of his head, while the rest of the passengers chimed in. He talked about how much he missed his hometown and how excited he was to have a day off in Pittsburgh next Tuesday to hang out with his friends, but most of all he was really excited to see his dog!

After we dropped him off, Wiz immediately took the stage and played an amazing set.  From “Roll Up” to “Black and Yellow”, Wiz put all of his effort into every song he performed, and his positive energy on stage was very contagious!  The entire Convocation Center was packed with students singing along and dancing to every song, which was an awesome sight to see. At the end of his set, it was time to get in the van and wait for Wiz and his entourage to get in so that we could escort him to the meet and greet on the other side of Convo. The presence of multiple security members and police officers caught the attention of concert-goers, and before I knew it there was a large number of students waiting to see Wiz. When he got into the van, the crowd erupted into a sea of screams, shouts, and “I LOVE YOU WIZ!”. I’d have to say that driving him to the other entrance of Convo was quite a nerve-racking experience, as there were students trying to get near the van EVERYWHERE! Thankfully the JMU police and ESI security were very helpful, and we got him into his dressing room safely.

After taking a few pictures with the lucky meet and greet winners, it was time to get Wiz and his crew back to the hotel safely, but first, they wanted one thing: ice cream! After picking them up some “Late Night” Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, our night was coming to a close. We dropped them off at the hotel, and  they thanked us for all of our hard work throughout the day, and we wished them luck with the rest of the tour. After cleaning up the dressing rooms at the Convocation Center, sadly our amazing day had come to an end.

It’s safe to say that this day was one of the best days of my life. I have worked all of the different positions for Convo shows in the past, but hands down being a runner has been my favorite position that I’ve worked! I love being of help to others, and everything that I did throughout the day was definitely worth it, because with our help all of the people affiliated with the tour felt at ease.  I’m graduating this May, and I never would have thought that I’d get the chance at such a great experience during my time here at JMU. I’d say that this year’s Spring Concert was the epitome of “winning”, and I’m so proud of UPB for all of their hard work!

~Amanda Corbelli, Center Stage Administrative Chair

Wiz Khalifa Tickets SOLD OUT!

The Campus Consciousness Tour featuring Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller is SOLD OUT!

Many of you have questions and misconceptions of how our tickets were sold.  Hopefully we can help answer and clear up confusion.

In total, UPB sold 3,098 tickets for this concert.  911 tickets were allocated and sold online.  2,187 tickets were available and sold at the box office.

Students began camping out starting at 8:30 AM Tuesday morning, March 1st.  Throughout the day, students continually entered the line.  Just being in line overnight did not guarantee tickets.  We did not sponsor the growing line; however, we did provide, games, meet and greet give-a-ways, and showed the movie “Get Him To The Greek” to provide entertainment to everyone who decided to camp out.  Everyone is line was handed a green “Box Office” form.  The form did not guarantee tickets.  It’s only a form to fill out for the box office.  We hand them out to everyone in line to make sure they are filled out before you get up to the box office window to help speed up sales.  They are also used to attempt to help prevent people cutting in line.

Tickets went on sale at 8 AM.  As of 8:50 AM, all online tickets were sold out.  The last ticket in the box office was sold at 10:34 AM. As of 8:01 AM, the link on our website was working, and the jmuupb.musictoday.com website was up and running.  Due to the extremely large volume of people attempting to access the site and buy tickets, not all ticket requests could be filled.  Requests online were processed by an independent company, not UPB, and we had no control over those sales.

Students have also been asking about our 8 ticket limit and why only 3,098 tickets were available. In the past few years, we have had a limit of 8 tickets per person and we have never had an issue with it.  This limit was placed after a concert where people were buying up to 50 at a time.  We based an 8 ticket limit off of major ticket selling websites, like Ticket Master and StubHub.  We can reevaluate this number for future concerts.  As for a half vs. full Convocation layout, all of our concerts in the past have been half Convo.  We are not able to do a full Convo concert due to logistics.

We know a lot of students are upset about not getting tickets.  However, as for any concert at any venue, there are only a limited number of tickets for sale due to capacity. This is first fully sold out Convocation concert in the past few years.  It was also our fastest selling concert in UPB history.  We did not anticipate selling out so quickly.

Chances to win tickets are still available! Listen to Q101 daily for a chance to win tickets.  They are the only exclusive radio station with a very limited number of tickets.  We will also be giving out one last pair of tickets through a promotion after spring break.  Check back to our Facebook page for more info.

We are very excited and look forward to April 2nd!


UPB Presents…The Campus Consciousness Tour ft. Wiz Khalifa

Wiz Khalifa.  The first thing that probably pops into everyone’s head is “Black and Yellow, Black and Yellow, Black and Yellow, Black and Yellow..”  However, the second thing that will now come to mind is that he is coming to JMU as part of UPB’s Spring Convocation Concert!

Headlining for The Campus Consciousness Tour, Wiz Khalifa will be performing along with Pittsburg rapper Mac Miller, and an unannounced special guest.  UPB is bringing Khalifa due to his high popularity among students according to our survey released at the end of last semester.  Although other artists had higher poll results (Kid Cudi and Ke$ha), we were unable to bring them do to price and date conflict issues (Read our past post: Heartbroken Over A Kid).  However, Wiz Khalifa still garnered immense interest from the student body, and we believed it was the best choice for this spring.

We are very excited to team up with The Campus Consciousness Tour too!  “Half rock tour, half environmental campaign, CCT aims to inspire and activate students in an electric atmosphere while leaving a positive impact on each community the tour visits. In addition to educating and mobilizing students, the tour includes many greening elements and is run to have a minimal environmental footprint.”  The CCT is a project started by Reverb, a non-profit organization dedicated to “greening work with bands and artists” by teaching sustainable practices to a variety of music industry leaders, including venues, record labels, and radio stations.  UPB is excited to work with this great organization and show that all of us can be active participants in protecting the environment, which will in turn create measurable change.

UPB’s Spring concert, The Campus Consciousness Tour featuring Wiz Khalifa, will be held on Saturday, April 2nd, in the Convocation Center.  Tickets will go on sale in the Warren Hall Box Office and online at upb.jmu.edu at 8 AM on Wednesday, March 2nd.  Tickets are $28 for floor/ public/ day of show, and $25 for reserved seating with a JACard.

~Mitch Ramey, Public Relations Director

Heartbroken Over A Kid

I’m feeling sad. And a bit pathetic. Maybe desperate is a better adjective? Or perhaps used. Any person who has done whatever they could to impress a special person in their life knows how I feel. When you want so badly to just make them see how great you could be together. That feeling of helplessness when “the one” just doesn’t think you’re good enough. And then they reject you over and over, no matter what you try to do to show them you care. Some of us try to guilt them into accepting us. Some of us leave with our pride and our head held high. I’m balancing between the two.

That’s how I feel about our attempt to get Kid Cudi to come to JMU. For years now, you have all let it be clear that you want him to come. There’s a facebook group. There’s countless votes on the survey. On top of that, we receive write-ins on the survey and emails to our account requesting him by name. So we listened! We tried, JMU.

I tried to impress him with our great venue. Imagine – a sold out show at Convo! But it didn’t work.

I tried to show him that we would be such a great pairing. JMU – a school filled with students who have requested him by name! But it didn’t work.

I increased the bid. Once. Then once more. Then I extended the bid by a couple of days. Then by a week. Then by a month. But it still didn’t work.

Now I’m deciding between a guilt trip (Scott “Kid Cudi” Mescudi, wouldn’t your mom want you to say yes? Did you know that we’re both from Cleveland? I probably ran into you at Solon High School! You know, we do have mutual high school friends on facebook!) or just leaving with my pride, moving on to a new artist, and parting ways amicably.

But rest assured JMU, we’re analyzing your survey results, pouring over available artist lists, and bidding artists for an even better spring Convo concert!  Get excited!

~Carrie Martin, UPB Coordinator

Cash, Check, or Flex Only

It’s 5am… do you know where you’re daughter or son is?  If UPB is having a concert, there is a good chance they are sleeping on the Warren patio.  No joke, people take their concerts seriously here at JMU. Ticket sales occur once a semester maybe twice usually for Center Stage but this year things are different. UPB, Center Stage, and yours truly have worked out a way to have 3 concerts this semester, and each of these shows require a similar planning, marketing and executing processes.

One thing about concert planning that I have come to love has been the ticket sales.  Day before the sales occur Center Stagers set up lines on the patio for the faithful fans to camp in. When we leave for the night and return to our houses JMU students with blankets, pillows and tents in hand creep over to set up their beds. The excited fans arrive anywhere from 5 to 10 hours early to play games, watch movies or just sleep until the doors open at 8am. I arrive at 5 am when the sun is still asleep for ticket sales. Sleeping bodies and soft whispers greet me with my UPB umbrella as I wait patiently for the time to arrive. Fast forward to 6:30 am people begin to pack up their sleeping bags and rub the sleepies out of their eyes.  Forms required to buy tickets are passed out and they are clutched like they are golden tickets!

7 am: My marketing team starts going through the line to give away meet and greets. The campers quickly wake up and try to remember facts about artists to win the prize.

Finally, 8 am:  The large doors fly open revealing the ticket sellers. Students line up with their forms and cash, check or flex their eyes excited for the event occurring weeks from now.

~Angela Marino, Center Stage Director