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UWRF Finals Fest to feature national recording artist

April 21, 2011

UW-River Falls students heading to Knowles Center on May 5 will see pop star Jason Derulo, who is most famous for songs such as “Whatcha Say” and “In My Head,” and has toured with Lady Gaga.

Although not an easy process, Dave Herdan, performing arts and lecture programmer for Falcon Programs said that, in the end, Jason Derulo was the final choice according to a campus survey and vote.

“It was a very long and difficult process,” Herdan said. “The majority of students voted for Jason Derulo.”

The process involved students voting for their favorite artists, which included performers like Kid Cudi and Mumford and Sons, tallying the votes and contacting the artists to negotiate a deal for them to perform here.

Herdan said that he would be working closely with Amy Aschenberner, the concerts programmer for Falcon Programs, who will be working on preparing for the week of Finals Fest.

Aschenberner has been in charge of planning concerts on campus for the past two years, and has worked on Finals Fest. She provided students with the survey to vote the 2011 artist, contacted Jason Derulo’s agent, booked the show and coordinated volunteers for the day of the performance.

Aschenberner said that she has received plenty of positive feedback to the Derulo coming here, and looks toward the future to meet every student’s entertainment needs.

“Students can expect a different genre every year to assure that within four years of college, the majority of students felt their genre preference was met,” Aschenberner said.

So far, close to half of the tickets that were available have been sold, and Falcon Programs expects to sell more.

“In the past, we’ve almost doubled our sales day of the concert,” Aschenberner said. “We expect to see a lot of the community and students purchasing tickets that day.”

Deanna Baisden, marketing specialist for Falcon Programs, has been working closely with advertising around campus for the event. She is also working on a survey available on OrgSync throughout April for students to comment on previous events that have been held on campus, as well as future events that they would like to see.
Baisden said that the students who take this survey would get a chance to win prizes.

“The winner of the survey gets the life size Jason cutout and two tickets to Finals Fest,” Baisden said in an email.
Finals Fest, a tradition at UWRF, has given students the chance to see big names for a small price, said Baisden and Herdan.

In the past, big names like Sara Bareilles, POS and Brother Ali have performed for Falcon Programs, and the response from students has been very positive with the artist and venue.

Baisden said that the venue at UWRF offers perks compared to those at bigger universities.

“The intimacy that our venues provide create a once in a lifetime experience for students, and memories that they can take with them for the rest of their lives,” Baisden said.

Tickets are currently on sale for students, faculty and staff for $15, and $22 for the general public, both online and at will call. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show starts at 8 p.m. in Knowles Center.