In response to a suggestion from the Residential Arts Program to offer more arts programming in the dorms, Wilbur Hall residences have begun a new series of concert receptions to introduce freshmen to the performing arts scene on campus.
The resident fellows (RF) at Wilbur are planning informal receptions in the residences before Friday night concerts at Bing Concert Hall and Memorial Church as part of an effort to facilitate access to these events for new students, according to David Davidson, the RF in Trancos.
Since most of these concerts are free, the receptions provide early access to tickets and allow students to socialize before the events.
The first reception was held on Nov. 8 in the Cedro lounge before the Stanford Wind Ensemble performance in Bing Concert Hall.
“I like that everyone who is interested in the music can get together and talk before, instead of going and not really getting to talk about it and just watching,” said Alyssa Rudelis ’17, a Cedro resident. “It’s nice to have the community.”
The choice to make these events open to all Wilbur residents was partially made to provide an outlet for students from different dorms to meet each other and also for logistical purposes, said Cedro RF Marcelo Clerici-Arias.
“This is one of the events that perhaps if each dorm independently in Wilbur organizes it, only a handful of people would go,” Clerici-Arias said.
For the pilot event last week, half of the 40 students who signed up for the reception and concert came from Cedro, but four other dorms sent handfuls of people as well, Clerici-Arias added.
About an hour before the concert, students-most arriving in suits and cocktail dresses-were provided with deserts and drinks in the Cedro lounge.
Although many of the freshmen at the event said that they had a previous interest in music, few had ever attended a musical event on campus.
“I’ve always been really interested in going to see cultural, musical events,” Rudelis said. “And the reception was just a plus.”
Organizers said the bulk of the planning work was figuring out a system for ordering and distributing tickets. Purchasing the food and beverages was a small, crucial task they did right before the event.
“College students will never turn down food, so it never hurts to have a little motivation,” said Rosie La Puma ’17.
Students participating in the reception must physically claim tickets at the Wilbur Housing Front Desk the afternoon before the concert in addition to submitting an RSVP. Remaining tickets will be returned to will call.
“I would definitely go to receptions around Wilbur if they keep having them for concerts that I’ll be going to,” said Christopher Kimes ’17.
The RFs intended this program to bring freshmen to the arts on campus, but the program also provides an easy way for upperclassman staff or students from the four-class residence Okada to continue or begin to attend these events with their dorms.
“Actually this is my first event going to Bing,” said Ben Rosellini ’15, a Cedro resident assistant.
While Wilbur residents have already had the chance to go to the Monterey Bay Aquarium in the past and may attend a Cirque de Soleil performance this year, the new on-campus reception program will allow freshmen to take advantage of Stanford events, Davidson said.
He added that Wilbur RFs hope to host receptions every two to three weeks on Friday nights and the organizers are open to expanding the receptions for other types of events.
“The goal of other RFs is to have us going to theater, to improv sessions, to dance, to comedy,” Davidson said. “All of those things will probably happen, we just need to have a simple way to actually start it.”
Contact Alex Zivkovic at aleksa ‘at’ stanford.edu.