It’s more than just a concert

It’s not every day that you can crowd surf on campus.April 24 was not just any day, however — it was the day of Springfest.UVM Student Association Concerts has been bringing popular bands and singers to the UVM campus for the annual music festival since 2001.While SA Concerts works hard to attract aurally appealing acts, and students discuss the merits, or lack thereof, of the musicians at length leading up to the day, Springfest is not just about the music — it’s a UVM cultural event.”I would’ve come to Springfest even if I didn’t care about the bands playing,”  sophomore Tabatha Leahy said. “I think most people go for the experience. Springfest is a really fun day.”This year, 60-plus degrees of sunshine permitted Springfest to take place outside on the CBW green.Students in T-shirts, shorts and sundresses danced in the crowd or relaxed on the grass.Most students who attended Springfest were UVM and Burlington-area students, but some people came from much further away to attend.”I saw student IDs from Italy,” SA Concerts member Xana Raymond, who worked at the entrance to Springfest, said. “There was a whole group of students from Italy. They were just here for the weekend.”While Springfest officially began at noon, the crowd was somewhat thin until around 3 or 4 o’clock, when headliner MSTRKRFT was expected to come on.Still, all of the acts performed well and got a generally positive reception.The acts leading up to MSTRKRFT were Fancy Drifters, Ila Mawana, Theophilus London and Ingrid Michaelson.Winner of the UVM Battle of the Bands competition, the members of Fancy Drifters are all UVM students.”It was a good experience to play a big event,” Fancy Drifters member and sophomore Eric Fanning said. “I had a lot of fun doing it.”While Ingrid Michaelson, who opened for  MSTRKRFT, was more acoustic compared to the rest of the artists on the bill, her style proved well for an opening act.Michaelson’s mix between folk and indie pop, complete with ukulele accompaniment, provided a nice mood for students to wander around the green and socialize with friends.When MSTRKRFT finally took the stage in the late afternoon, the energy of the then-large crowd noticeably increased, as packed-in undergrads jumped up and down to the first beats of the two Toronto-based DJs.MSTRKRFT played dance-friendly beats that students enjoyed, with enthusiastic cheers and dancing, but ultimately responses to the band were mixed.”I heard that MSTRKRFT wasn’t actually that great, but I loved it,” first year Andrew Lieberman said. “I don’t remember a lot to be frank.”While the techno-influenced music created an enjoyable atmosphere, some felt that the songs were kind of repetitive.”It was a good time, but the beat was kind of just the same thing over and over,” sophomore Phil Gregory said.Some students admit that Springfest is more fun when under the influence of drugs and alcohol.”I thought it was a great concert,” first year Jared Coyne said. “I heard it’s not a lot of fun if you’re sober, [but] I was in the front row loving it.”