October 9, 2012
BY: NICOLA MACLEOD
The St. Thomas University Students’ Union plans to turn Tommyfest into an annual event that will be open to the public.
The first Tommyfest concert will be held next Monday, October 15 at the Fredericton Boyce Farmers Market and will be headlined by St. John’s indie rockers, Hey Rosetta!.
Hey Rosetta! has been popular throughout Canada since their 2008 breakout album Into Your Lungs (and around in your heart and on through your blood). They are known for mixing string instruments and piano with their songs’ intricate rhythms.
“We’re doing this show to create a fun event and hopefully a new tradition,” said St. Thomas University Students’ Union President John Hoben.
The show was announced in September after much anticipation.
St. Thomas University normally hosts a concert during their Welcome Week for new students. This year there was no concert on the orientation schedule, but promise of a later announcement.
“The reason we didn’t have the concert during Welcome Week was simply because of the low turnout to the Welcome Week concert in past years,” said students’ union Communications Coordinator and Welcome Week Chair Meryn Steeves. “We figured that this was a result of everyone being exhausted by the end of Welcome Week, as well as having the liquor ban imposed at that time.”
Instead of having a concert during Welcome Week, St. Thomas hosted a battle of the bands. The winning band won the opportunity to open for Hey Rosetta! at Tommyfest.
“We feel pretty fortunate actually, to have been given such a ridiculously amazing opportunity,” said Cedric Noel, vocalist and guitar player for winning band, Redwood Fields. “It is great to see the STUSU [St. Thomas University Students’ Union] stepping up and providing something really cool to the student population.”
The market was chosen due to its accommodating size. The capacity is 855 people, which is more than any venue on campus.
The decision was made to open the event to the public in order to maximize ticket sales.
Even though it is open to the public, the students’ union has decided not to apply for a liquor license in order to keep the event open for all students.
Students were given priority, with tickets going on sale two days early for St. Thomas University students.
Tickets for students are also cheaper than for the public. Student tickets are 15 dollars while tickets for the public remain at 25 dollars.
“Ticket sales going well, and are picking up as we get closer to the show,” said Hoben.
Tickets can be purchased at Read’s and on online as well as on campus for students.
The students’ union says it is too soon to tell if Tommyfest will become an annual event. They plan to meet after to discuss the outcome and success of the project.
“If they do continue TommyFest in the following years, they should keep showcasing STU bands/musicians,” said Noel. “There are a lot of them at the school, but they don’t always have the arena to showcase what they’ve got.”
“We’re hoping to establish something recognizable with the STU brand on it,” added Hoben. “We want this to grow every year and become an established event.”