Bastille brings the beat

Bastille performs Tuesday night in Renaissance Coliseum to an audience of 1,735.
photo by Cenn Hall

There was no “bad blood” amongst the Bradley community as British indie pop band Bastille performed Tuesday in Renaissance Coliseum as part of their Wild, Wild World tour.

The concert was put on by the Activities Council of Bradley University (ACBU), which sent out a survery in September 2016 to the entire student body to vote on possible performers for the annual spring concert. Options on this year’s survey included The Chainsmokers, Nick Jonas and Bastille. Students were able to check as many performers as they wanted on the survey.

According to Kelly Wrobel, president of ACBU, the survey had over 2,000 responses and 1,800 of the responses had Bastille checked as a preference. Once it was evident the majority of voters opted for Bastille, negotiations between ACBU and the band’s management began.

“From there, we talked to our middle-agent, who was able to work with [Bastille’s] management to bring them to Bradley as a part of their Wild, Wild World tour,” Wrobel said. “We were so excited to have such a well-known and kind artist on campus.”

Wrobel worked with ACBU coordinator Brooke Engerman to ensure pre-production for the concert was a success.

One of the various marketing tactics employed by ACBU was to give away tickets and T-shirts through Facebook live events in order to raise student interest in the months before the concert.

“Prior to the show, we created a marketing plan that would engage students as much as possible,” Wrobel said. “We also work with management to make sure the rider and contract are complete and that we will be prepared the day of [the concert]. A lot of our help comes from our advisor, Michael Croal. We truly would not have been able to do it without his help and support for the success of the event.”

Bastille, a group that dropped its second studio album “Wild World” in September 2016, performed for about an hour and a half after opening act Mondo Cozmo warmed up the stage.

photo by Tony Xu

Attendance for the concert was 1,735, down from last year’s Macklemore and Ryan Lewis concert that courted a crowd of 3,381. Students in attendance at the Bastille show said they enjoyed the experience of the night.

“I thought the concert was great. [Bastille] had a lot of really great songs,” Aaron Zimmerman, a senior accounting major, said. “It was just an overall good atmosphere to enjoy the concert.”

However, it wasn’t just Bradley students who came out to see the band perform. Peoria community members and even people from out of state journeyed to see the concert. For some, seeing Bastille was personal.

“I have been a fan of Bastille since 2013; they saved my life,” Alyssa Schlicht, who came from Iowa to see Bastille, said. “They put on such a great show. [On the day of the concert], not even kidding, I am three years clean, and it is all because of [Bastille]. That’s why tonight was so special for me.”

These satisfactory reactions are what make all the work of ACBU coordinators worth it at the end of the show, according to Wrobel.

“The best part as a coordinator is when the lights come down, and the students are smiling and excited because they loved the performance so much,” Wrobel said. “I definitely saw a lot of that last night. The Coliseum was buzzing from the performance.”