Soundfest 2017 Recap

This past Sunday, the Virginia Tech Union presented their annual music festival on the Drillfield — Soundfest. The Virginia Tech Union has been booking lively entertainment for the Hokie nation since 1969, and this year was another hit in bringing together national talents like COIN and A R I Z O N A, as well as local heroes: like Dads on FB and The Band Concord.

Behind each Soundfest music festival is the VTU team division called Alternative Sounds, comprised of hardworking students who dedicate their time and efforts to booking and managing bands, arranging promotional materials and organizing all of the day-of tasks.

In addition to the free music performances, Soundfest offered a space to relax before the stress of finals week consumed the campus. Tie dye, carnival rides and the Hokies’ favorite dining trucks all made an appearance.

Here to speak more of the event is Director of Alternative Sounds, Abigail Voytilla.

How long have you been Director of Alternative Sounds?

Since the beginning of the 2016/2017 school year.

Which bands do you hope to book in future events?

The Alternative Sound Committee is dedicated to the research and support of up and coming musicians, so I would love to see more alternative/rock/indie bands on their way to fame.

How many people are on the Alternative Sounds committee?

The committee listserv consists of about 50 people, but I have a very dedicated group of about 10.

What skills have you learned from this position with VTU?

I’ve learned how to plan concerts, from small student coffee house performances to a full fledged music festival. That’s not something most people care about learning, but I know it’ll help me in the music industry. I also learned the importance of time management. Planning for Soundfest began last November. This couldn’t have been a last minute event.

Anything else to add?

It was so great having a range of bands — from student to local to regional to national level. I’m really proud of how well this music festival correlated with our committee’s mission statement and didn’t turn into a “who’s the biggest artist we can book” type of show. It’s important that our committee bring the alt rock/indie crowd of VT some bands they can appreciate. After all, VTU attempts to host at least one event throughout the year that each individual on campus would find enjoyable.

Bryli Long, a junior studying Fashion Merchandising and Design said her favorite part of Soundfest was “just relaxing in the grass and taking in the cool sounds.” In a similar note, a senior Computer Science major, Turner Bowling, agreed; "It was awesome to see the student body out supporting newer artists! And honestly it was a good way to relax a bit before a tough week of finals."

Another attendee of this year’s Soundfest, Julia Workowski, a junior studying Dietetics said “there couldn’t be anything better than the warm evening sun against your back, relaxed friends all around you, and the infectious tones of the band COIN making your soul want to dance.”

Soundfest 2017 offered the perfect last bit of relaxation before finals and the exposure to many alternative sounds. 

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