SU rejects Second Stage
Second Stage, the outdoor concert on the Village Green that preceded the W.I.L.D. concert in Brookings Quadrangle for the first time last semester, will not be a part of this fall W.I.L.D.
While Team 31 had planned to fund a hip hop artist for Second Stage using money left over in its talent budget, the Student Union executive board voted unanimously against the additional concert at an emergency meeting earlier this week.
Team 31 co-chair junior Casey Hochberg said not receiving the funding was a major setback in reshaping W.I.L.D. into a safer, more generally appealing and fun festival environment. Particularly after both administrators and campus police commended Team 31 for an unusually smooth spring W.I.L.D., Hochberg said the lack of a major alcohol-free pre-W.I.L.D. event is concerning.
“We put a lot of hard work into planning and executing Second Stage last semester, and it seemed to us that the students and the administration appreciated our efforts,” Hochberg said. “It’s just a shame.”
While it may not be happening this semester, Hochberg said she maintains hope that Second Stage will become part of W.I.L.D. tradition.
”Team 31 and I see the two-stage festival model as the future of W.I.L.D.,” Hochberg said. “We haven’t given up on Second Stage and neither should the students.”
SU Vice President of Finance senior Ammar Karimjee said that Student Union chose not to fund the concert because as in the case of Wolfgang Gartner’s performance, the stage would have cost significantly more than the actual artist performing on it. Karimjee noted one of the main reasons Wolfgang Gartner cost less than the setup was because he was already touring in the area.
Student Union allocates approximately $300,000 per year for fall and spring W.I.L.D. About half of that amount is reserved for talent while the rest covers operational expenses.
“We appreciated the idea of a festival, and we appreciated their goals in trying to do that. However, the amount of production cost necessary to make that happen was not in our opinion justifiable,” Karimjee said. “It just seems inherently weird for the operation costs behind an event to be worth more than the cost of the actual talent performing there.”