A sold-out crowd of 8,500 on Friday night was ‘the most excited we’ve seen people for a long time,’ according to SPEC
April 15, 2012, 11:15 pm·
Justin Cohen | DP
The day after Friday’s Spring Fling concert, Wharton and Nursing freshman Nikhil Das’ ears were still ringing.
“The music was so loud we tore up pieces of paper towel and put it in our ears,” said Das, who had never been to an electronic concert before.
Das was one of 8,500 students who purchased tickets for the Passion Pit and Tiësto concert Friday night, which is Franklin Field’s maximum capacity for Fling.
“It was a very engaged crowd, probably the most excited we’ve seen people for a long time,” College senior and Social Planning and Events Committee President Shana Rusonis said.
Wharton junior and SPEC Concerts Co-Director Chase Baxter agreed.
“We spoke to Tiësto very briefly, and he seems very happy with how the show went and was very impressed with the crowd,” he said.
He added that the sectioned seating at the concert — which was implemented for the first time last year — was effective at audience control.
“There were definitely some people who tried getting into the floor,” he said. “But for the most part, the assigned seating really helped keep the problems in the stands at a minimum.”
Friday and Saturday’s activities in the Quad continued to be popular among Penn students.
“The inflatables were awesome, and the fried Oreos at QuadFest are my yearly bad habit,” said College junior Sarah Schlein.
This year, 24 student groups also performed during Friday and Saturday’s QuadFest.
College junior Maddy Dopico, a member of Off the Beat and Quadramics, was happy with the audience attendance at her shows.
“The audience was super engaged,” she said. “It really captured the Spring Fling spirit.”
Dopico believes her Fling experience was different from that of most students, as she was participating in the Quadramics play in the evening.
“I had responsibilities at night,” she said. “For me, it was party by day, show by night … and I’ve been doing that for three years now.”
College junior Chloe Sharfin, who attended the Mask & Wig show, the Penn Dhamaka show and several student band performances, agreed that seeing students in support of other performances made Fling “a more unifying experience.”
“All these performing arts groups have their shows, but it’s not everyday you get to see these independent student bands,” she said. “I saw many more performances than I ever did. I think the weather really contributed to it.”
Great weather was also a welcome change from last year’s Fling weekend for SPEC, according to Rusonis.
“We always worry about not having great weather because that means people are out and more active, instead of staying inside their rooms,” she said.
Though Fling weekend brought with it an amplified campus-wide drinking culture as usual, College senior Jerry Liu offered an alternative take on drinking during Fling.
“I live in the moment, and I don’t need alcohol to have fun,” he said. “Every day is a Fling for me, so it was like any other weekend.”
For Das, however, the past weekend will be ingrained in his memory forever.
“I feel like I lucked out by camping out for floor tickets and getting in the second row,” he said. “I would definitely do that again for all the next Flings.”