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Relay For Life Entertains All Night


Relay For Life, perhaps one of Loyola’s biggest events of the year, provided enough entertainment to keep people’s eyes open all night. The first act was Cecilia Grace, freshman and Battle of the Bands champion, which provides her the opportunity to be the opening act for Loyolapalooza. She played several original songs; one of my favorites being “Sky”. This song was written for her friend’s younger sister (Sky) who was diagnosed with cancer. She finished off with a cover of Coldplay’s “Fix You” as a dedication to her uncle who was also touched by cancer.

Following her performance was the all-male acapella singing group, The Chimes. Comprised of a large amount of freshman, they sang a crowd-pleasing rendition of “Dancin’ in the Moonlight”, . They also challenged One Direction with their own version of “Story of my Life, “where most of the guys had solos. Their energy and engagement of the audience kept everyone on their feet, clapping along.

relay2The mood quickly shifted to a somber one during the Luminaria ceremony in Reitz, following the Chimes performance. While everyone walked around the track holding their light in memory of those who have died of cancer, the all-female Belles group started performing in the center of the arena. Tears were evident as they sang” May Angels Lead You In”. Their voices were pure and beautiful, and they were the perfect group to have during the Luminaria ceremony.

The singing group trend continued as Loyola’s first co-ed acapella group, the Greysounds, took the stage. They started off with Pink’s “Just Give Me A Reason,” with president Becky Scullin taking on the solo, before Brandon Newby joined her for a duet. The combination of their voices along with the background beats  all came together to create a unique and unforgettable performance. They closed with my favorite rendition of One Republic’s “Counting Stars.” They provided an ideal amount of beat boxing to support the lead singer of this song, Brandon Newby.

Around 10:40, everyone crowded into Reitz Arena for the announcement of the Loyolapalooza act. There were a few rumors of who the singer/band would be, but I was completely off guard when they announced that Capital Cities will be taking on Loyola! Everyone was cheering and re-gaining even more liveliness to keep themselves going for a few more hours.

An unexpected crowd pleaser took the stage next and made sure everyone was on their feet. Band Lukey The Bird was comprised of two Loyola alum, which was made evident by their constant appraisal of our beautiful campus, and the honor that we have of being Loyola students. The lead singer graduated in 2009, but made it clear that the “college life” does not stop post-college. He said, “If you guys can’t dance to this next song, you’ll be in a nursing home by the time you’re 26.” Although I regretfully stayed seated, the majority of the room was up on their feet. He sang a respectful song, “White Flags,” which spread the message of self-respect and being honest with yourself.

As midnight quickly approached, the Gospel Choir performed and announced their free concert in mid-April. The combination of voices and strength from the Gospel Choir was positively received by the crowd, and added to the emotional intensity of the night. Following the Gospel Choir was another Battle of the Bands competitor, They were one of my favorites of the night, because of the immense amount of energy from lead singer, Brandon Newby, and the array of instruments accompanying his voice. They immediately made it clear that their performance was “no Adele concert,” and had everyone get up and dance. Their humor was used to their advantage, as they sang a song that they claimed Kanye West “stole” from them. The instruments ranged from keys and base, guitars, drums, a trumpet and a saxophone. They mixed up their genres of music, singing rap. to Britney Spears, to a new love song which they debuted for us, and received positive feedback.

Both the Dance Team and the Dance Company made people forget that it was already morning. Both of their routines seemed better than ever, and it was made clear how much hard work and heart that went into each dance routine. Shortly after, we received a different taste of music from band Train-Hoppin With Grandpa. Lead singer Wes Peters was accompanied by two band mates, one on the tambourine and the other on the banjo. Their unique instruments and distinctive voice of Wes Peters made them a stand out band of the night.

As the entertainment slowly came to a close, we watched a hilarious comedic routine from the Nevergreens, who always know how to incorporate college-related problems into their acts. The night of entertainment closed with the crowning of Mr. Loyola, which went to sophomore Ben Gilbert, who answered the best when asked what his perfect date would consist of. Relay provided an all -around unforgettable night of entertainment, which allowed everyone to stay all night and forget the time, but remember the meaning behind the 12 hour night.

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Relay For Life Entertains All Night