Not so WILD: End of semester concert cancelled

| Senior Cadenza Editor

At the end of each spring semester, Washington University students make the journey to Brookings Quadrangle for WILD. The largest student-run event at Wash. U. organized by the Social Programming Board (SPB), WILD promises to be a time of fun and relaxation for students each spring as they celebrate the last day of classes and the end of a long, grueling semester. This year, students will have to host their own versions of WILD at home.

With the closing of the University and the suspension of all spring events, WILD, scheduled to take place on April 24, was also cancelled. Students will have to wait until the fall to Walk In and Lay Down now. The artist scheduled to perform this spring will remain a mystery, but junior Charlotte Pohl, vice president of student programming, expressed her excitement over the artist selection and hopes that they can perform at Wash. U. in a future semester.

Curran Neenan | Student Life

Students gather in Brookings Quadrangle in October 2019 for WILD. A$AP Ferg headlined last WILD.

The abrupt cancellation means that there are still some loose ends to tie up—the funds allocated for Spring 2020 WILD have to go somewhere. SPB submitted a carryforward request for part of the money, and will know if their request has been granted later this month. What that means for WILD in the 2020-2021 school year is unclear. However, Pohl did mention that if the request were approved, SPB would “allocate the [funds] to an increase in talent and production elements during the performance.”

Since one of SPB’s main programming events is no longer happening, the Executive Board has brainstormed something else to take its place using virtual programming. On Wed. March 23, Pohl sent an email to the student body reiterating the information and providing students with the option to make their voices heard. Pohl sent students a link to a survey gauging interest in some kind of virtual programming to take the place of the SPB events—including WILD—that students would miss out on.

With students spread out all over the country and the world, virtual programming could connect all of us in a way that Zoom classes cannot. There’s something all-encompassing about watching a performance with people no matter if you’re together or apart, as long as you’re watching the same thing.

“I think any way that students can come together in such an isolating time is a good idea,” wrote Pohl. “Additionally, by bringing in some type of talent, we can sustain SPB programming and showcase the hard work our team has been putting in all semester, while bringing students together.”

Pohl said in a statement to Student Life that the programming would take the form of a “secure link sent out to Wash. U. undergrads where an artist/comedian would perform.” After the performance, Wash. U. students would have the opportunity to ask the performer questions in a live Q&A.

While unable to release the results of the survey at this time, if this virtual performance were to happen, it would be a first for SPB first, Pohl doesn’t foresee any issues. “Our only jobs would be to advertise the event and then moderate the Q&A portion, so the most important aspect would be students logging on. All of the tech aspects would be handled by a third party,” Pohl wrote.

The performer would be someone not already scheduled to perform on campus. The Executive Board has a list of potential performers from their agent, but is looking at pricing and overall feasibility, as well as taking into account the responses from last week’s survey.

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