Being someone else at KSPU karaoke night

Performing allows students to step out of their comfort zone

Mason Williams, Staff Reporter

Keaton Dixson
Allison O’Connor’s karaoke performance of “Shallow” at the KSPU karaoke event on 10/29.

Samantha Ledbetter, a senior double majoring in art history and photography, seemed to take on another persona as she took the stage to perform “Popular” from the Broadway Musical Wicked at the “Karaoke with KSPU” event on Tuesday, Oct. 29.

At the event, Ledbetter, as well as her fellow performers, had the opportunity to do something they do not have the chance to do any other time of the year: be someone else.  

“I think karaoke provides a vessel for people to be people they don’t have to be every other second of the day. You can just play who you want,” Ledbetter said. 

Weter Hall was filled with harmonious voices belting out the lyrics to the classic late 90’s hit “I Want It That Way” by the Backstreet Boys.

Keaton Dixson
KSPU boy band ends the night with Backstreet Boys “I Want it That Way.”

The group of five, led by senior political science student and KSPU Station Manager Mike Miller, gave a soulful performance while dressed up as cowboys, time travelers and oversized condiments. The audience clapped and sang along to every word until the song reached its conclusion and KSPU’s first-ever karaoke night came to an end.

In the two hours preceding this grand finale, there were many other performances. Those who performed chose a wide variety of songs, ranging from old fashioned country to R&B ballads to musical numbers. 

In the spirit of Halloween, participants were encouraged to dress up. The participant with the best costume received two tickets to an upcoming concert by Seattle indie artist Noah Gunderson. 

Notable costumes included Marty Mcfly, Dwayne the Rock Johnson and, the ultimate winner, Guy Fieri, worn by junior Alex Moore.

“Growing up, my family loved karaoke and I was definitely the one that would get the most nervous,“ said KSPU Events Coordinator Julie Cantero.

“Remember that no one really cares what you sound like and it’s just to have a good time and it’s helpful if you have a group of friends who are there to amp you up and be like, ‘yeah you got this’ and encourage you.”

Keaton Dixson
Allison O’Connor as Lady Gaga and Gianna Francisco as Bradley Cooper perform an all time performance of “Shallow” at KSPU karaoke night.

It was as if the entire audience was friends of the performers, the crowd clapping and cheering for everyone that took the stage regardless of how pitchy they might have been. 

As fun as karaoke may be, some attendees were reluctant to take part because they were scared of being judged for their lack of vocal prowess. 

Natalie Grey, freshman nursing student, didn’t feel comfortable performing at first. But the forgiving nature of the crowd made her feel bold enough to take the stage and perform “We Belong Together” by Mariah Carey. Her performance drew ample applause and she could be seen grinning ear to ear as she left the stage. 

“It’s just a fun social experience where even if you’re normally shy in front of people, you don’t feel that social anxiety,” Gray said.