Convocation Center swings, misses the beat

Late during spring semester last year, I wrote an article where I addressed the need for the University to book respected and appropriate musical acts to perform at the school’s new convocation center. Certainly, the venue’s success in drawing Coldplay and Ludacris has been encouraging, but progress came to a screaming halt last month when it was announced that the arena’s next concert would feature none other than America’s favorite boy band, Good Charlotte. Good Charlotte? What are we, 13?
I was hoping this wouldn’t happen. The school’s got it all wrong. You see, we don’t like crap. I was hoping they would at least throw a bone to a school with a top-tier music program and a radio station dedicated to indy music. But instead, they chose Good Charlotte. What, did the All-American Rejects already have plans?
The Convocation Center events committee needs to make a serious effort to gauge what the students really want. I’ll give you a hint: it isn’t Neil Goldberg’s cirque, which performed at the Convocation Center on October 18th (The Miami Herald called it “a combination of fantasy circus and Broadway dream,” which basically means it sucked), and it certainly, most definitely, without question is not Good Charlotte.
I know it wasn’t a financial problem, either. Good Charlotte probably cost a pretty penny to perform on campus, and the events committee obviously chose consciously to have them perform. I can think of dozens of acts, including a number of homeless street performers, who would have been better concerts than Good Charlotte.
So why not just ask the kids? I know we wouldn’t arrive at a consensus on an act to perform, but we would certainly overwhelmingly vote ‘Or what’ to the question “Does Good Charlotte rock, or what?”
I’m sick of hearing my best friends at UF and FSU raving about how Incubus and Dave and Outkast came to perform on their campus. I’m sick of them asking who’s played on UM campus recently.
But more than anything, I’m sick of the processed pop crap that is being scheduled at a pristine, $50 million facility. The University of Miami needs to open its eyes and schedule talent that reflects student interest. The time is now for the Convocation Center to find out what the students really want.
Ben Minkus can be contacted at