On Friday, October 14, The Millersville English club sponsored an open-microphone event in Club D’Ville. Students were invited to the Caffeine House in the basement of the Student Memorial Center at 7 PM, to enjoy an evening of music and poetry. By 7 on Friday night, The Caffeine House was nearly packed with curious students and member of the English Club.
Stephanie Little, the English Club President, has been a lover of English and poetry since she was a kid. She organized the event as “an outlet for people to use their words.”
The on-stage performers during the event included Little and Bob Ellis, who recited personal poetry, as well as Josh Nein, who performed personal guitar pieces.
On the stage, Ellis said that in one of his poems, he felt the need “to express how good life is.” Little likewise performed a piece titled “Be a Dreamer,” which offered an optimistic take on life. “Be a Dreamer” represented a stark contrast to Little’s previous reading, “This Sin,” a dark poem which recounted a rape from a woman’s perspective. Little warned the audience that she may cry during the reading; she finished the dramatic poem while fighting back tears.
Though Little and Ellis were members of the English Club, Nein had heard about the event for a friend. His explanation on-stage for participating was: “I thought, what the heck, why not?” The two pieces he performed represented “bubblegum happy,” and complete heartbreak” respectively. He also thanked the English Club on-stage for hosting the event.
Another student, who left before being interviewed, performed stand-up comedy. Her routine was very dark, focusing on her very German last name to Holocaust jokes. She broached topics such as living very close to Amish country, and coming out to a conservative mother. Her routine generated few laugh-out-loud moments, but plenty of smiles and chuckles from the members of the audience.
English Club member Owen Williams helped with the set-up in Caffeine House, and provided free drinks for all who wanted any.
Blake, A Millersville student who attended the event, said he had a “great experience.” He was impressed with the ability of everyone who performed to “express their feelings comfortably.” He ended by saying he would be “happy to come back.”
Little said after the event that she was pleased with the crowd that had shown up to watch and participate, considering the limited prep time after the event was agreed-upon. The event was booked from 7PM until 10 PM, but by the end of an hour several people were needed to perform more than once, signaling the agreed-upon denouement. More such presentations are scheduled for each of the following months, and Little says they will be given clearer advertising than Friday’s event.
According to Little, “This is only the beginning.”