Spring Fling and its headlining act Regina Spektor drew thousands of students into Smith Center despite inclement weather outside Saturday.
Maria Bea Querido, the executive chair of Program Board, said she, along with other PB members, decided to move the event to Smith Center Friday. While the day-long concert is traditionally held in University Yard, GW reserved the Smith Center as a backup in case of bad weather.
“It took a little extra work moving things from Marvin Center to the Smith Center, and the Smith Center layout is a little more complicated than University Yard,” said senior Katie Kemen, Program Board Parties co-chair. “But we planned for these changes and it ran smoothly.”
The University notified students of the change Friday by posting flyers around campus and sending out an e-mail notification. Querido said that despite the venue change, PB was happy with the reported 2,600 people in attendance.
Attendance at last year’s Spring Fling, which was also moved inside to the Smith Center, was about 3,200, about 600 people more than this year’s total attendance, The Hatchet previously reported.
Spring Fling festivities on Saturday included an afternoon full of musical performances from student bands, a large blow-up maze, a trampoline and free food.
Despite encountering technical difficulties as the concert began, Spektor rallied the near-full Smith Center crowd by having the audience chant “turn it on,” until Spring Fling technicians got her microphone to work.
With her unique performing style, Spektor used only herself as an accompanist by clapping her hands while singing or beating a drumstick on a chair, Spektor entertained the crowd with hit songs such as “Fidelity” and “On the Radio.”
“This place is trippy; I like it,” Spektor said during the show. “It makes me feel like a giantess.”
Seniors Jesse Kristin and Tommy Siegel, two thirds of the trio Jukebox the Ghost, who have played at Spring Fling for three years, said that Spektor was the best headliner they had seen.
“I thought kids here weren’t ready for a solo pianist,” Kristin said. “It was way better than I thought it would be.”
The concert was just one event out of three days worth of PB programming. Also on Saturday other bands performed, including New York City-based songwriter Only Son and the DJ from Thievery Corporation who opened for headliner Spektor.
Student bands included Bottles/Cans and Jukebox the Ghost. Some of GW’s premier a-cappella groups also performed, including the GW Vibes, GW Geet, Troubadours, Sons of PItch, Emocapella and Sirens. Capitol Funk and Balance gave a break to the music in their dance performances.
Last year Talib Kweli headlined Spring Fling, while two years ago Lloyd Banks took the stage. Fall Fest acts of previous years include hip-hop artist Common last fall, Robert Randolph and the Family Band last year and Pat Mcgee two years ago.
Siegel added that although there may have been less people, those who attended are the more enthusiastic audience.
“People are tuned in,” Siegel said. “The people who are here are into (the music).”
Some students expressed disappointment that the event had to be moved to the Smith Center, but recognized this was an unfortunate circumstance of the bad weather.
Freshman Colin Bornmann said that it did not feel like spring, and noted that when the event is in University Yard, more students are bound to show up.
Bornmann said, “If it’s outside you could hear it all around campus and it draws you in.”
-Brandon Butler contributed to this report.