Who: The rapper, Lil Dicky, hosted by Student Union Board (SUB)
When: Friday, April 21, 2017 - 7:00 PM
Where: Havener Visitor Lot, 1201 N State Street, Rolla, MO
The Student Union Board, otherwise known as SUB, consists of many teams and supplemental teams and/or committees, but the most important one mentioning for this article is the team that managed to bring Lil Dicky to our science-loving campus. This particular team consists of Richard “Ricky” Dolan, who is in charge of concerts, Heather Reynolds, who is in charge of light and sound, Brennan Kristek, who is in charge of promotions, and lastly, Owen Murphy, who is in charge of campus traditions. Their different committees and roles act independently, and as a whole, are the ones tasked with making Lil Dicky’s concert a success.
Ricky Dolan broadly oversees SUB concerts, meaning he had to do the main search for the artist and the overall organization of the concert. Ricky and his team started their search for an artist six months in advance as a means to try to get ahead of other campuses in terms of scheduling. When starting his search for an entertainer, he had a specific niche in mind and with some luck, found out that Lil Dicky was available during the right time and for the right price.
“When you're booking artists that fit a niche on campus it all comes down to luck, because if an artist has a demand on your campus, odds are there is a demand for that artist on plenty of other college campuses as well.” - Richard “Ricky” Dolan, Concerts
Since Ricky could find Lil Dicky and book him within SUB’s budget, this allowed the concert to be free to S&T students and alumni. This gratis concept holds for any SUB concert. If the artist costs more than the approved budget, then there must be tickets sold. If the artist is under or at the approved budget, then the concert is free for students and alumni. After Lil Dicky was booked, then the rest of the SUB teams stepped in to start planning the event.
The next step in planning process is advertisement, which is led by Brennan Kristek. After having an actual operating venue selected by Heather Reynolds, Brennan starts designing promotional material and in the world of event planning, advertising and promotion is key. Promoting an event can make or break it no matter who or what the attraction is, and Brennan makes sure to bring in the crowd - modest may he be.
“I basically helped with designing promotional material for our big Lil Dicky announcement (posters, advertisements, etc.). It was mainly Richard Dolan who got him here.” - Brennan Kristek, Promotions
Now for the venue this year, with the anticipation of a larger audience between Brennan’s promotions and Lil Dicky’s popular rapper reputation, it took some creativity and vision to arrange the venue. On April 21st, the SUB Block Party stage will be on the Havener Visitor Lot instead of on the Havener Lawn, where it was located in past years. The visitor lot will allow everyone in the crowd to see and hear Lil Dicky, thus increasing the likelihood of a good night. Despite the increased space and visibility, it is still advised that students and alumni arrive before 6:30 PM to ensure that they get a spot that they can enjoy the whole time. This also means more work for Heather and Owen and their crew prior, during, and after the show.
Heather is the Light and Sound Committee’s Director and handles all of SUB’s equipment, staff and production of the event. Lil Dicky’s staff send a contract to Ricky and in that contract, is a Technical Rider. The Technical Rider consists of a list of all the equipment needed at the venue to put on the show. If the committee does not have everything required, Heather must search until she finds something within her budget. On the day of the concert, Heather makes sure all her staff know what they are doing and makes sure the show goes on smoothly and just the way the artist wants it. Even after the show Heather still has work to do.
“After each event, I clean equipment, check if it needs to be repaired, create invoices for bill organizations, and process the final numbers so my staff can be paid.” - Heather Reynolds, Light and Sound
While Heather focuses on the artist’s needs, Owen Murphy focuses on the audience. He puts together ideas of what to anticipate will happen during the event that will enhance the crowd member experience. He works with everyone else on the team to make sure the venue is ideal for attendees.
“My responsibility is to provide a fun environment that will keep the students at the event and have fun until the performance starts. I didn't have much to do with the booking aspect of Lil Dicky but I do provide the venue and atmosphere for the event.” - Owen Murphy, Campus Traditions
Owen is one of the last pieces that ties up all the loose ends of the process of organizing a successful and fantastic Friday evening, geared towards the stressed college student. Ultimately, the strenuous planning that SUB does to bring fun stuff to our campus takes a lot of work, all of which, is done by students. The students, who are on SUB, put a lot of time and effort into putting together current entertainment and we should nevertheless, be appreciative of all their hard work. As previously stated, their team started searching for entertainers six months in advance - I cannot remember the last time I planned something six months in advance besides a vacation - so, if you see this team of fantastic people give them a thank you.
Lastly, if you are attending the concert, please be aware of the following:
The concert is free to students and alumni with an S&T ID and are guaranteed priority access if they arrive before 6:30 PM.
Once 6:30 PM rolls around the venue is open to the general public. Again, the general public will not be allowed access to the venue until 6:30 PM.
No professional cameras and this event follows campus's no alcohol, tobacco and weapons policies.