This past Saturday, Sept. 11, Party on the Green returned to campus! Because of COVID-19, the event was canceled last year, and for many, this was the first time they experienced a night of music and dancing in the residential quad. When asked what she thought of her first Party on the Green, Nina Anderson ’24 replied, “I met people I had previously no context for, found out what Rat Queen is and went down a big slide.”
For others, the event was a refreshing revival of a well-loved tradition. Seniors had the opportunity to enjoy Party on the Green one last time before graduation, an experience that the class of 2021 did not have. Erik Livingston ’22, the Music Director of Woo ‘91, stated that “[he] missed getting to see everyone on campus gather together and enjoy music. [He] also loved playing music in between sets, taking requests and playing music people were excited to hear. As per usual, [he] was blown away by Rat Queen, their performance was the highlight of [his] night.”
For the opening band, Rat Queen, this performance was a return to their roots, as the band composed entirely of alumni, Eleanor Linafelt ’20, Robyn Newcomb ’20 and Kate Bertrand ’20, came back to where it all began. When sitting down for an interview with the group, they said their time since graduation has been a “whirlwind” and were all excited to be able to come back on campus. Party on the Green gave the self-described friendship-rock- distortion-indie band the opportunity to play the new songs from their album live for the first time. The crowd clearly enjoyed the new songs, which was evident through the energetic dancing.
While working on their amazing new music, each member has taken up day jobs… some of which even use their degrees. Linafelt, an alum of the Voice, is a staff writer at a media company and writes primarily for a parenting magazine. Newcomb is working at a farm outside of Boston, and Bertrand works at a bagelry! Though the members of the band have started exciting new careers, they stated that being back at CoW made it feel as though “they had never left.” We can only hope that they will come back soon, and it will once again be like they had never left. If you enjoyed Rat Queen’s performance on Saturday, follow their Instagram @allhailratqueen for updates on their upcoming album.
After Rat Queen finished their set, Darius Henry, whose stage name is HDBeenDope, took to the stage. The energy in the crowd was electric as he played a variety of trap and hip-hop songs that had the crowd dancing and singing at the top of their lungs. Kaleigh Bozick ’24 enjoyed his performance, saying “HDBeenDope really energized the crowd and connected to us through talking to us about what each song meant to him and allowing us to contribute to his music. He created a fun energy at the concert and electrified the audience.” You can follow HDBeenDope on Instagram @hdbeendope.
Next up, the band Lawrence went on the stage and gave it their all. Lawrence is composed of the brother-sister singing duo, Clyde and Gracie Lawrence, as well as their ensemble. The group plays primarily soul-pop music, which brought a great vibe to the residential quad. Students all over the field were swaying, dancing and singing along to the music. Haley Huett ’23 said, “Party on the Green felt like the first time I was really back on campus. I hadn’t felt that energy since my freshman year, pre-pandemic. Lawrence was great! It was nice to listen to new music.” You can find Lawrence on Instagram @lawrencetheband.
Party on the Green was a great event that allowed for the return of a well-loved and deeply missed Wooster tradition. It was definitely an experience that students will remember for a long time.