By Maria D’Anselmi
This year’s Mallapalooza festivities raged on during a balmy Saturday night as University of Dallas students listened to live music, ate classic festival food and drank beer. The pre-finals bash, hosted by Student Programming at UD, brought the UD community together on the Mall. There were four bands, inexpensive food and intoxicated students. Students listed their favorite parts of the night.
“[I enjoyed] just being out here and hanging out on campus, listening to the bands, or just hanging out with your friends in the beer garden,” senior Donovan Kelly said.
Street tacos, hot dogs, soda and plenty of booze fueled a joyous atmosphere as the students celebrated the waning semester.
The Science Building balcony was a VIP room, or ‘green room,’ with a full liquor bar and food for band members, volunteers, and SPUD board members.
“We wanted to make the outside bands feel very welcome,” SPUD president Chris Goldkamp said. “[The greenroom] is to make them feel like they’re VIPs.”
SPUD musical entertainment coordinator and Mallapalooza coordinator Tommy Joseph also said that he felt the green room was a fun addition.
“We’ve never had a green room open up to a few select students, so it’s been kind of fun to have different students be able to come up and talk to different band members,” Joseph said.
Joseph said that SPUD made a special effort this year to improve the music. The two student bands, Racoon Jay and Civil Wars 2.0, were met with cheers from their classmates as they opened for the later shows.
“In regards to music, we really wanted to try and elevate the sound, make it more fun and upbeat,” Joseph said. “Hemmle and TEAM are local bands who we’ve had here before and students really responded to.”
These are local bands from Dallas, and the energetic dancing of the students testified to the excellence of their performances. The players rocked the stage as the audience fist-pumped, made dance circles and swing danced.
“We got an excellent company to provide sound and staging which really makes a lot of difference,” Joseph said. However, not everyone said that they felt that the bands had a place at Mallapalooza.
“I would have rather we had more cover bands so the student body could actually get into the songs, dance, and have a good time,” junior Anna Sowder said. “It’s a little hard just listening to other people’s specific music, especially for bands I don’t know very well.”
However Sowder enjoyed seeing the community come together to party.
“I really like how people paint up and all that kind of stuff,” Sowder said. “It’s a lot of fun to watch the student body get out. I like that it’s on the Mall and that the purpose is to dance and have fun before finals I think that’s great, I just think the execution is maybe a little lacking.”
As Goldkamp explained, the reason why Mallapalooza is always such a hit is because of the people who attend.
“It’s not like you’re only coming for the bands, you’re coming for your friends, you’re coming for the food, if you’re of age you’re coming for the beer,” Goldkamp said. “We wanted to make it a very communal event.”
As the semester winds down, Mallapalooza brought a fresh burst of energy and camaraderie to the student body.