Spring W.I.L.D. to test new format

and | Student Life Editors

With its largest production of the year happening in less than a month, the new group tasked with running the majority of Washington University’s largest concerts and shows is reworking its reveal process and plans for spring W.I.L.D.

Team 31 was disbanded at the end of last year, and with its farewell, Social Programming Board plans to book multiple artists of equal acclaim, making the show more of a festival and incorporating different genres. Instead of bringing back Second Stage, they plan to hold an event on the South 40 Swamp.

SPB said it will reveal the first of multiple W.I.L.D. artists once their Facebook page reaches 1,500 likes in a targeted effort to boost the group’s social media reach.

UPDATE 11:24 a.m. March 28: Yeasayer announced as the first artist for spring W.I.L.D. on SPB’s Facebook page. Read the breaking news post here.

As of 2 a.m. Thursday morning, SPB’s Facebook group had 1295 “likes.”

“It is something that is new. We haven’t tried it before, and it doesn’t necessarily determine what we are doing in the future,” sophomore Anna Eisenberg, W.I.L.D co-chair, said.

SPB is planning to reveal artists individually, once their respective contracts are finalized. The first contract was finalized Wednesday afternoon, and Eisenberg said that setting a Facebook ultimatum will help them publicize additional performers as soon as they are booked.

Eisenberg said it will be important for students to realize as SPB announces additional performers for spring W.I.L.D. that this year’s concert will not technically have a headliner or opener—instead it will have a number of acts of a similar level.

That kind of concert is possible because of leftover money from fall W.I.L.D. SPB was given $150,000 to spend over both W.I.L.D. performances for the 2012-2013 academic year, and Wolfgang Gartner only cost $40,000.

SPB paid BABCO, the booking agent SPB hired for spring W.I.L.D., $10,000. It is the first time for a W.I.L.D. concert to be planned with the assistance of an agent, which students decided would help them before they transition to the new SPB timeline that will give them about six months to plan concerts.

That left SPB $100,000 to spend on acts for the spring. SPB hoped to spend the money not to focus on a particular genre but to target noteworthy artists.

“We wanted to give students a well-rounded concert, so we went with artists that we felt would bring a good show as opposed to putting ourselves in specific genres for students,” Eisenberg said.

SPB treasurer, junior Jacob Trunsky, said the event on the Swamp, unlike the former Second Stage, will not be an additional concert, but something for students to enjoy whether or not they plan to go to W.I.L.D.

“We are going to have some sort of programming the day of W.I.L.D, we want to make it a day-long event. However, we are looking to change it up and not necessarily have a concert and music overload,” Trunsky said. “It will involve food and some novelty activities.”

Social Programming Board is currently working on revamping its website, but officers hope to use social media as their primary means of communication with students.

“Liking the Facebook page not only gets you the first artist reveal, you’ll also get updates on happy hour, comedy shows, gargoyle shows, special events and other interesting opportunities that social programming board is always putting up there,” sophomore Emma Tyler, SPB president, said. “It is not only to get one artist reveal, it is to get updates from the largest programming body on campus that is always putting things on for students.”

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