After countless hours of preparation, Jane and I finally had our karaoke party Saturday night. At 9:15 there was one small huddle of people in the center of Lunt basement; we were nervous that not enough people would come or want to sing. We need not have worried.
By 9:45, Lunt was filling up; we played a clip of Nao singing Hero, and our mashup performers took the stage. They were fantastic. Meanwhile, we were overwhelmed with requests to sing karaoke. Our biggest problem was too many people wanting to go.
Jonah and his friend Didem had signed up for “Since U Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson, but it was the only song Mike Lipsitz, Fossi and the Lloyd 70s guys could agree on. In a great moment of compromise (Haverford style), the two groups agreed to sing it together. The audience cheered.
Genna Cherichello and her cohorts waited not-so-patiently to sing “Umbrella” by Rihanna, starting to chant the chorus every time a new performer went up. When it was finally their turn, they rushed onstage and sang their hearts out. People kept going up and joining them to the point that there were as many people onstage as in the audience.
Everyone was singing and dancing together, to the words, “Umbrella, ella, ella, eh, eh, eh.” Therisson screamed, “This is bigger than Punk or Prep [the dance at the squash courts]!” The Haverford inner-rock star was released. For a night we were, as the poster Jane created said (stolen and reformatted from a Carnival Cruise ad at the R100 station), “Karaoke Gods.”
Jane and I think we have tapped into a desire that has been pent up. We get to see Indie bands synthesize their sounds at Lunt every other weekend, but when do we ever get to sing, and sing the songs we like? Sam Kaplan said he is planning to host another karaoke party in April. We hope that karaoke turns into a regular tradition. We’ll sure go to the parties.
Daniel Kojo came to Haverford today. This matters because he has a painting series called “Afronauts.” Black aliens? Ok, the connection to Pope.L’s impending ET^2 performastravaganzathon is too uncanny not to mention it here. Why is this such a money metaphor right now? I like it, but I don’t know if this Kojo guy makes it work for me beyond the cool sound of the word”Afronaut,” which Slate tells us is a big deal in music now. I can’t decide if this is a trendy fantasy that’s about to get played out or if it will stick around.
Lil’ Wayne on rap rivals: “I just eat them for supper, get in my spaceship, and hover.”
When I went to the Brooklyn Museum over winter break, my destination was Gilbert & George. Along the way, I was distracted by a modern white cubicle-type space set up in the middle of the traditional dark-lit floor. Four temporary walls encased twenty-five photographs of African Americans; flat screen TVs outside ran interviews.
The subjects ranged from Toni Morrison to Will Smith to Colin Powell. The exhibit was The Black List Project, by photographer/filmmaker Timothy Greenfield-Sanders and public radio host/former Times film critic Elvis Mitchell (the interviewer). It is on display at the Brooklyn Museum until March 29th. The Black List Project also includes a book and film component (Volume Two of the documentaries is premiering on HBO February 26th).
I saw the exhibition with my friend, and her reaction seemed to be, “Oh, a bunch of portraits. Great, now let’s move on.”
However, I think it’s important that we take some time to honor important and accomplished African Americans in our museums. We have countless paintings of old white men hanging in gilded frames. It’s about time we had some black faces.
glimpses of greatness were witnessed at our meeting on wendesday. hearing about everyone’s preliminary stunts and final projects in detail was both enlightening and fun! each project is totally unique, from pope.l’s otherworldly performance shoot, to jen’s remake of a fleetwood mac album, to nao’s comfort station, to harrell’s fieldtrips. especially exciting will be the flurry of preliminary stunts in the coming weeks, including mashup karaoke, giant birthday parties, the et^2 screening, and anonymous valentines. the air at haverford is getting more spontaneous and creative by the day. many thanks to the faculty, students and non-haverpeople who have assisted among friends so far!
thanks to john muse, here are some pics of the joyous event.
We chatted with Nao again this week. We didn’t get to pretend we were in Paris, because iChat (and thus its special effects) weren’t working. But we had a very productive talk on Skype, and now we’d like to fill you in.
Plans for the comfort station are coming along. Nao found warming heart gel packs for soothing purposes (click Read More to see). For the station itself, we want a cabana lean-to; the icon could be a red cross tilted to an X. Before Nao gets here, we’ll put together a questionnaire asking Haverfordians what their worries are. We’ll have a big sewing party to make fanny packs; Nao had the idea to make origami flowers from dollar bills and cover them with Velcro dots.
Today I took a trip to the nice bathroom by the periodicals room in Magill, and I found this weird flier. The question on this sheet of paper reads: “If you were to make a peanut butter sandwich, what else would you put on it? Be bold.” The responses (honey, AIDS, your mom’s chest hair among them) interest me less than the question. Who’s asking? Are we asked to write about a sandwich we would really eat? Or is the question just a clever vandalism opportunity that allows us to scrawl “semen” on a wall? And will we receive sandwiches for our participation?
I went to see the Gilbert & George exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum of Art over winter break. Let me tell you, their art is crazy. These two London artists address war, sex, politics, religion, and bodily functions. Their earlier work includes mostly black and white sketches, but they are better known for their shocking large-scale pieces: digital collages of photographs, graphics, and color.
I didn’t understand a lot of their work, but I did enjoy it. There was everything from feces to naked bodies to psychedelic crowds of people to screaming, angry faces. Sometimes Gilbert & George have a specific political message, but sometimes it seems like they are just trying to send a message, any at all.
Gilbert & George paste real personals into their piece, alongside crude graffiti, eerie eye-shots, and photographs of themselves. There’s Gilbert pictured in front of the personals. Three giant panels took up an entire wall of the museum.