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Letter to the Editor: Posner concert response

Dear Setonian Editorial Board,

The Seton Hall concert argument has been going on for years now. I personally organized the Mike Posner concert on campus last Friday and put a lot of time and work into making a success so I feel the need to defend criticism. Firstly, the concert was not hosted by the University but by the Jewish Student Union, RSA, SAB and WSOU.

Prior to the concert, I did some research on a small basis to get a feel for student interest in Mike Posner and what I found out was that the students just wanted a concert. While planning the concert, I selected a Friday night because: a) it wasn't a school night, b) Mike Posner is a still a student at Duke and he was available for a Friday night performance, and c) the Main Lounge was booked for the Thursday night (my original goal). I couldn't book a different Thursday night because I didn't want to pick a date after Thanksgiving given of the start of finals. I understand that students go home on weekends but the main assumption is that it is because of the lack of events on campus. I obviously realize that Mike Posner is not the most popular person in the world but he is a big enough name, especially around college campuses.

I agree that there was a lack of advertising and like everything else that was pointed out and mentioned in the article, there is a reason for such. I do acknowledge the fact that we did start advertising later than we had wanted to but that was due to the fact that we could not advertise the event until all contracts were signed by both parties (the University and Mike Posner) and that took longer than anticipated. However, once we got the green light from the University, we made the Facebook event, handed out fliers on the green and cafeteria, sent out blast emails to Freshmen and spread a lot of word of mouth about the show.

It was noted that we chose too big a venue for this performance and set ourselves up for failure and I have to disagree with that point. Where else could we have done the performance, a classroom? The Main Lounge is the only other acceptable venue. The Main Lounge also had the necessary audio equipment for the event. Let's also not forget that there were two opening acts for Mike Posner; Scott Free and The Kid Daytona. Obviously we want performers that the students know and are familiar with but we wanted to get a concert going for the first time in three years with someone that would be accepted by the administration given the Third Eye Blind show that left the administration sour for future concerts.

We hear that we want a big name concert for the school but big names means big money. After reading the Setonian's article last semester about Ok Go being rejected and the student backlash that the school can't pay $35,000 for a performer, I myself was appalled and disappointed with the University's efforts. However, when I started organizing my own event and trying to secure funds, I understood that it is not currently feasible for our University to be hosting such budget-draining events. Did you know that our endowment has been harshly minimized due to the economic recession and that the administration is currently cutting staff due to the lack of funds? How could we then spend $20,000-$40,000 on a big name? I tried to get a big name but it just couldn't happen.

Instead of appreciation and excitement for an organization and group of people when they put on an extraordinary event on campus for the first time in over three years, we are chastised by the school's newspaper for not putting on a big enough event.

I emailed the Setonian weeks before the show asking for a review of Mike Posner's new album or even an article promoting the concert but I did not receive a response. Maybe the newspaper should take some initiative for on-campus events and advertise them more. The students that did attend the concert had an amazing time. They jumped around and sang word-for-word with Mike's music and that is all that matters to me. If 400 people had shown up and stood there not moving, I would be reading a "collective opinion" of how we got a boring performer but we got an exciting performer that had 50 energetic people. Mike Posner wasn't embarrassed, he made his crowd happy and they were having the time of their lives. The only people that should be embarrassed are the students that constantly sit around bickering about the lack of events on campus. Mike even stayed around after the concert to sign autographs, take pictures and connect with his fans. That's something that someone with passion and desire to spread his love for music with the people that share the same love.

Thank you,
Sebastian Zar
Junior student, Seton Hall University

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