Under dim lights in an intimate corner of Games Room Etc., couches and ottomans were occupied by an audience of eager listeners, ready to engage their full attention to the brave performers who took their turn at the mic during Unplugged, hosted by ASI BEAT. Unplugged is a free-for-all open mic night in which performers may share a piece of themselves through various forms of self expression such as spoken word, poetry, singing, guitar playing and more.
This was my first time attending Unplugged and my first time performing an original poem at an open mic night. The crowd was very supportive and appreciative of the talent of all of the performers. Everyone was greeted to the stage with welcoming applause. Attendees snuggled up on the couches drinking the free hot coffee and enjoying the pastries provided. Whether people came to perform or came to observe, everyone enjoyed the evening of entertainment.
On this particular night, a Slam Poetry competition was held to determine who would represent Cal Poly Pomona at the Regional Slam Poetry competition. Each competitor had two poems prepared to display at Unplugged in which a panel of judges then scored. Valeria Mercado, Tyrone Stokes, Adam Elramly and Grace Olguin all went on to compete at the ACUI Regional Recreation Conference for CPP, winning second place overall.
“Unplugged provides a space of creativity,” said fourth-year liberal studies major Michelle Wong. Wong attended Unplugged for the first time after a BEAT representative informed her about the event. Having enjoyed the slam poetry and spoken word aspect the most, Wong said she plans on attending future Unplugged events.
BEAT Concert Co-Chair, Daniel Lyerla, said that Unplugged is designed to provide a domain for students to express themselves through music and art in a friendly environment, and that those who attend are very accepting.
“I just enjoy seeing friends perform and speak their mind,” fifth-year political science major Brian Lozada said about his first time at Unplugged.
Unplugged is every Tuesday in Games Room Etc. from 7 to 9 p.m. For more information about upcoming BEAT events visit http://www.asi.csupomona.edu/beat/default.php