Open Mic Night showcases poets, comedians, singers

Charlsie Fowler, sophomore in apparel and textiles, sings an opera version of "Hotline Bling" by Drake at the UPC Open Mic Night in the Little Theater of the K-State Student Union on March 23, 2016. (Miranda Snyder | The Collegian)

A variety of performers took the stage of Little Theatre in the K-State Student Union during Open Mic Night, hosted by the Union Program Council Wednesday evening. Performers ranged from poets to comedians to singers. The event was free of charge, and potential performers were allowed to sign up at the door, according to the UPC’s website.

Comedians were given five minutes to perform, and singers were limited to one song of their choice. The music styles represented ranged from opera covers of modern songs to pop and gospel.

Though the signup sheet near the entrance of the venue remained blank until about 20 minutes before the event’s scheduled beginning time of 9 p.m., 15 performers trickled in and signed up to showcase their talent.

The audience consisted of performers and their supporters, including Hrishikesh Satpute, freshman in business, who said he was attending to cheer on his friend.

Those in attendance also included students and Manhattan and surrounding-area residents. Katie Richards, 24, a visitor to Manhattan, said she had heard about the Open Mic Night from a friend who attends K-State and decided to check it out for herself.

“It’s great to see such a talented group of people sharing what they’re passionate about with others,” Richards said.

Gail Bunge, senior in food science and industry, performed a song she said she had just finished writing an hour before the event. While it was not Bunge’s first performance, Open Mic Night marked her first performance at K-State, she said. Bunge said she would describe her style as “alt-pop, kind of like Ed Sheeran.”

A self-proclaimed singer-songwriter, Bunge also played the guitar during her performance. While she said she has been playing since she was in eighth grade, she does not usually perform with her guitar, instead preferring to focus on the lyrics. Bunge, however, said she gained experience balancing the two as a camp counselor over the summer.

“I just wanted to perform in front of my friends,” Bunge said.