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The Blue & Gray Press | May 22, 2018

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Giant’s concert choice receives passionate response

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By UPMA KAPOOR

Giant Productions has organized their biggest event yet for the spring concert; Swedish DJ’s Icona Pop, indie rock couple Matt & Kim and synthesizer-sensations Passion Pit will be performing at the Anderson Center on Wednesday, Feb. 6 at 8 p.m.

Students were stunned. Passion Pit is an exceptionally famous band that has been featured in countless commercials. After “Sleepyhead,” their breakout single from their first album, “Chunk of Change,” went viral, their popularity began to skyrocket in anticipation of their latest release from last summer’s album, “Gossamer.”

The band’s tour ticket sales typically exceed $30 at well-reputed concert halls and festivals across the country. At The University of Mary Washington, the student price is only $10, a third of the price, if not less, than any of the band’s other shows.

Lonnie Southall, a senior English major and president of Giant Productions, has had students ask him what ticket prices are. Some say the pricing is expensive and unreasonable. He is very direct and honest with his response: “No, it’s not, for Passion Pit, Matt & Kim, and another opener.”

Southall is more than pleased with the high ticket sales. The week the announcement was made, a week before students returned to school for classes, “over 100 tickets had already been sold.”

Jenna Randall, vice president and junior international affairs major, said they had already sold 25 percent of pre-sale tickets for students.

“This is the strongest show we’ve had,” Randall said.

The organization has never had a show that sold so well before the week of the actual event. Previous acts, such as Mac Miller and Jimmy Eat World, did not have as many ticket sales as this upcoming concert.

Giant Productions decided to book Passion Pit and Matt & Kim after conducting a Giant-wide survey asking which performers would be best for their spring concert. Passion Pit and Matt & Kim were the acts that received the most votes.

Southall could not have been happier, especially because “for the first time, it all worked out [with] the first act they wanted.”
“Elation” is not a strong enough word to describe the enthusiasm about the concert.

“I didn’t think Mary Washington was capable of bringing someone as awesome as them,” said Filagot Taye, a sophomore biology major.

Question marks, exclamation points and caps lock riddle almost every comment on Giant Productions’ Facebook event page. Currently, it has almost 700 people “attending” the concert, the most of any event hosted by Giant.

Jeff Paddock, a sophomore international affairs and philosophy major, said he was “extremely happy, and [he] knew some of his friends wouldn’t believe it.”

Kathlean Davis, a senior biology major, said she “was really excited because they are both big names and they are touring together. It’s a great way to finish off my year here.”

Preparation for the concert is already in full swing. Officers and the rest of the organization have been working tirelessly to make sure this concert lives up to students’ expectations.

According to Randall, “there are a ton of students behind this [event] and a ton of really hard work into making shows happen for their fellow students, and that’s really important.”