SBCC songwriters to showcase original work at Fe Bland Forum

TATE ROMAN, Channels Staff

City College students will be performing original work, accompanied by a guitarist or pianist, on Sept. 25 at the Fe Bland Forum.

The show, which will cost $10, will consist of students from professor Dr. John Clark’s Music 128 A and B, “Songwriting I” and “Songwriting II.” Attendees listen to student-written music from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m.

Every semester former and current students of the class team up with Clark to put together a concert for the school. These students take this opportunity to share what they’ve been working on and practice performing in front of a live audience.

“We go there to show the best of the best of our own material,” said student Joseph Stransky, who likes to go by Joseph on stage. “Not just our newest stuff; we go back and pick out our favorites too.”

Stransky and the others go through their catalogues of songs to find the perfect pieces to perform. With the help of Clark they work on vocals from their own original pieces, making sure the right notes are being hit at the right time. The students put a lot of their time into preparing for the event and working out the kinks to perfect their music.

The students agreed that even with plenty of preparation, performing in front of an audience can be very different from practicing.

“I wanted to just go home—I didn’t want to do it,” said Kerstin Nguyen, a student songwriter. “But once you get going it’s nice to feel the audience.”

Last semester was Nguyen first time performing, and she is returning for this semester’s performance. Her song choices for the event will be a mix of songs previously performed and newer ones that have yet to be heard.

Attendees can also expect to see a guitarist and pianist performing alongside each singer. Some students may even be playing instruments for their songs while they sing.

Clark wanted to shift emphasis on students, so he made it a point to let them explain the concert. He puts events together like this in order to see his student’s growth and to showcase the hidden talent in his class. It also serves as a representation of what students are doing on the other side of campus, in the music building.

He hopes to help people understand the hard work and dedication of students in the songwriting classes.

All of the proceeds from the concert will feed back towards the music department to help enable events like this to be continued.

This will be the concert to kick-off the SBCC Music Concert Series, which will continue throughout the semester.