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Behind Springfest 2024: How did the hype happen?

Springfest, one of the biggest annual events that almost every Brandeisian looks forward to, took place last Sunday this semester. This year’s headliner was Flyana Boss, and Isabella Lovestory and Lyn Lapid were their openers. On April 14, more than 1,375 students gathered around the stage at Chapels Field, enjoying free food trucks and dancing to the upbeat music, while shivering in the drizzle. While the weather was certainly not the most cooperative, Springfest this year for sure met up the hype of Brandeis. On the final weekend prior to April break, the participants had a blast before they would be off to home.

Who enabled all the hype to happen? What was all the behind-the-scenes planning of the biggest event every spring? The Hoot reached out to Matthew Galewski, Director of the Department of Student Engagement, and Teri Tozzi, Assistant Director of the Department of Student Engagement. As the main planners behind Springfest, they shared how everything was made happen with The Hoot.

Student Engagement shared that Springfest planning begins early in the fall semester. The Campus Activities Board (CAB) is the primary organizer of the event, and they play a major role in decision making for Springfest. Student Engagement provides support as CAB’s advisors and assists with the logistics of the day. 

Every year, Springfest has a concert committee that selects the artists and plans out the concerts. Lola Hamilton ’25 was this year’s Concerts Chair, and she was responsible for leading the committee. 

How did CAB decide which artists to invite? Every fall, they send out a survey to all students to obtain input on music genres to feature at Springfest. Students also have the opportunity to join the CAB Concerts committee, which puts together a list of potential acts. Student Engagement works with a company, Pretty Polly Productions, who would assist them in contracting the desired artists for Springfest. They also together help balance student input, artist availability and budget.

In addition to professional artists, there have also been student performers at Springfest as a tradition. Tozzi said this year the selection processes were different, because student performers were selected through the Brandeis Got Talent event, which was a collaboration between CAB and Basement Records. The winner of Brandeis Got Talent was Midnight Groove, who were also the openers for Springfest.

When Springfest was getting close, CAB started to get the whole campus ready on the Friday before. It started with the drop off of rented equipment, followed by the stage load-in and build on Saturday. On Sunday, the day of Springfest, CAB and staff volunteers started their day early and worked until late. They were up around campus from 7 a.m. through 9 p.m. setting up for and managing all elements of the concert and other programming on campus. 

Tozzi was glad that this year they were able to have each act start on time. While The Hoot noticed that during the beginning of Springfest, people were waiting for a long time to be let in, no response was provided on how this happened and how this could be avoided in the future. Tozzi said, “the length of the line ebbed and flowed throughout the concert, and we’ve made some helpful notes on ways to improve line flow for future years.” 

Meanwhile, according to other sources The Hoot spoke to, there were students holding up country flags at Springfest and trying to get the attention of the artists. Isabella Lovestory picked up and held a flag provided by students during her performance. Police were also involved. The Hoot asked Student Engagement to verify the truthfulness of this information and asked for their comment and response, if any. However, Student Engagement did not provide The Hoot with any information as of the writing of this article.

According to Tozzi, CAB received positive feedback on the concert experience, with students saying they thought the concert ran really well and appreciated the opportunity to volunteer and meet the artists. The overwhelmingly positive energy of the crowd surprised the organizers, which she also appreciated the gratitude the students expressed when leaving the concert. Springfest ended on a positive note.

If anyone is interested in planning the next Springfest, Tozzi would like the Brandeis community to know that membership in CAB is open to all students and they welcome the involvement of any interested students to help plan out campus events. If you are interested, make sure to follow CAB on Instagram (@brandeiscab), join via CampusGroups, and look out for them at the involvement fair in the fall.

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