Students Showcase Talent in Club-Run Concert
By Dennise DeJesus
On Thursday April 16, the CSI Revue held the “All Acoustics Event” in the amphitheater.
The event was low-key, but rich with talent of vocalists and warm harmonies of acoustic instruments from members of the CSI Revue. Though the event’s turnout was small, it was not short on entertainment.
Mixing musical performances with improvisation and skits, the event portrayed itself as a concert with the elements of a variety show.
Turnout increased as the music got louder, which attracted passersby to stop and watch.
Participants of the event were CSI students and members of the club. José Mendez, the club’s president, played guitar, Johanna Zumba and Rohan Colville were backup vocalists. Musician/vocalist Andres Toledo and Udochukwu Nkemakolam, the treasurer, also participated.
Mendez opened the event with a rendition of “God Save the People” by Godspell at the top of the steps of the atrium while Toledo strummed.
Cascading down the steps, Mendez pulled club members from the crowd onstage, finishing the song as a group as he rejoined them.
He warmed up the crowd with some musical jokes before performances began.
The first performance featured a cover of U2’s “With or Without You” by Udochukwu Nkemakolam.
Nkemakolam’s uneven and husky voice paired with the musician’s choppy guitar playing created a raw but emotional cover.
Vocalist Rohan Colville sang in harmony with the accompaniment of Toledo as they performed covers of Lifehouse’s “You and Me” and Bruno Mars’ “When I Was Your Man.”
It was not revealed until after the show that a majority of the numbers performed by Toledo and Colville were improvised.
Toledo then covered The Calling’s “Wherever Will You Go.” Toledo’s brood singing blended with his guitar playing, creating a warm feeling for most of the performance, fueled by support from the crowd. Toledo finished the song in a-capella.
Near the end of the concert, Mendez walked on stage pretending to be Professor Elemental, a character from the “steampunk” rap genre chap hop.
Mendez began the segment with an improvised skit with guest Mark Tanglao, who impersonated the Minecraft character Professor Grizwald.
Professor Elemental began his number with Toledo, who accompanied him in a performance of “I’m British.”
In a twist of events, Professor Elemental switched up the performance by doing a full round of “Fighting Trousers” with joyous claps from audience participation.
The concert ended with a performance of Sam Smith’s “I’m Not the Only One” by Colville and Toledo. The closing song became a favorite among audience members. Harry Zayas was one of them.
“My favorite part was Rohan’s singing,” Zayas said. “I pretty much liked it along with Andres’ guitar playing.”
While keeping the audience entertained with variety, members Colville and Toledo’s performances elicited the most response from the audience.
Members of the crowd praised Colville and Toledo’s versatility throughout the concert. Student Patrick Lane watched the concert with a few of his friends, and was glad to speak about his enjoyment of the event.
“I thought the concert was awesome. It had a lot of variation and was different compared to most events. Plus, it was nice to sit outside with beautiful weather.”
Club member Jean Reotutar recounted watching his colleagues onstage.
“I came out to support the club.” said Reotutar. “Everybody did a nice job and the skits were funny. [Of] all the performers, the guitarist was very flexible with his playing.”