Good People, Good Vibes: Beatnik 2015 Showcases Talent
by Henry Claudy on Friday, October 16th, 2015
Beatnik is Milton’s open mic night, sponsored by the Milton art magazine Magus Mabus. The performances at Beatniks stretch a wide range of everything from stand-up comedy to a variety of musical performances. “What’s made Beatnik especially special in recent years is a whole diversity of genres,” Michael Sabin (I), the music editor of Magus Mabus, says. He and Sam Rochelle (I), editor-in-chief of Magus, are the organizers of Beatnik.
Last Friday night, when I walked into Beatnik, staged in Straus Library, I didn’t know entirely what to expect. Immediately I was floored by the amount of people who turned up for the event. Feet were hanging from the railings, tables were full of snacks and drinks, and people were packed into the premium leather couches in the front of the space. Sam and Michael took the stage as our emcees for the night, and when the hosts eventually calmed the storm of the audience, the magic of Beatnik finally began.
This Beatnik was mostly music focused, but a wide variety of styles and genres were represented. Some students played sets on ukuleles, some played acoustic versions of hip-hop songs, and others played original songs. Sam says “Beatniks are home to some of the most creative, vibrant, and collaborative performances,” and it’s true; the diversity of the setlist was something for Milton to be proud of. Brian Hanley (III) rocked the house with two very energetic Marilyn Manson covers. Corey Hales (I) slowed things down with an original song and his Beatnik tradition of ‘Freefallin’’. Siramori Yattassaye (IV) wowed the audience with two original spoken-word/raps over Drake and J.Cole production. The Milton Jazz ensemble, who served as the Beatnik house band for the event, provided a mellow groove for the night. “All the people who performed seemed super excited and motivated. It’s really fun to see your friend’s different talents,” Nihal Raman (III) says.
At the end of the night, all who performed received a very warm response from the audience. This supportive environment is what separates Beatnik from other Milton performance events. “What’s awesome about Beatnik is that it’s a late night activity where everyone really wants to be there, ” Sam says. Michael cemented the statement by saying, “You never hear a boo or a lull in applause. Every person gets to feel like they did an amazing job.”
Though the performances are the focus of the night, it’s the relaxed atmosphere that really makes Beatnik special. Beatnik is not a recital, and it isn’t a place for students to be stressed over delivering a perfect performance. “[Beatnik] allows you to put yourself out there, and be a part of this incredibly fantastic, fun community,” Sam further explains. “Beatnik is a welcoming event where nobody will be judged for their abilities.” Both editors agree that “Peace, love, and happiness is what Beatnik is all about.”
If you weren’t able to show up for the past Beatnik, there will definitely be more in the future. The experience of attending, watching, performing, and being a part of such an environment is something that one must experience for themselves. If you want to hear what you missed out on last week, you can find a full recording of the night on the official Magus Mabus Soundcloud account, Magus Mabus Music.
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