Foreign Language Clubs Showcase Their Musical Talents at BYUrovision

Maren Kennedy and Mckay Kimball are BYUrovision’s emcees. Kennedy helped plan the event with other language clubs. (James Hoops)

BYU students gathered at the Varsity Theater for BYUrovision’s first-ever concert on November 3.

Inspired by the famous international songwriting competition Eurovision, the event was organized by the French Club. Maren Kennedy, president of the French Club, and Mckay Kimball, member of the comedy stand-up Humor U, were the masters of ceremonies.

The show opened with prelude music from BYU’s Celtic Folk Ensemble, playing classic Scottish and Irish folk tunes.

BYU’s Celtic Folk Ensemble launched BYUrovision on November 3. The group played accordion, mandolin, harp, violin, guitar and flute for the foreign language club event. (James Hoopes).

Kennedy and Kimball went on to explain what Eurovision is and highlight the actual winner of last year’s Eurovision, Ukrainian band Kalush.

A study by Ipsos shows that Americans are much less aware of the international music competition than other nations, only 21% of respondents having even heard of it. BYUrovision has provided an opportunity for BYU’s language clubs to collaborate and bring a new cultural experience to the campus community, Kennedy said.

Participants performed their pieces in front of a projection of the flag or landscape of the country they represented. France and Germany each had three participants, Italy two, and Portugal, Russia, Norway and Iceland one.

Lahren Wadswath from the Italian club said she had a lot of fun watching all the performers. “I have never felt so cultured”, Wadswatch said. “I hadn’t planned to come. I’m really glad I did.

Some performances sang to karaoke tracks while others brought live bands. The French club’s Trevor Smith and Wyatt Brown took third place, with Smith playing the piano and singing “Camps Elysées” while Brown roller-bladed in the aisles and on stage.

Italian Club member Eliza Tuinei said: “I was actually very impressed with the French pianist and roller skater. He had an amazing voice.”

Representatives of the Italian Club, Rod Ugayo on accordion and Kelsey Nay on vocals, took second place.

The first place winner of the evening went to Iceland. Local Provo band Just Khaki accompanied singer Hanna Eyre as she performed “Husavik”, a song from the movie “Eurovision Song Contest”.

The Iceland team won French cheese and won a trophy, which Kennedy says will sit in the Icelandic and Norwegian language department until next year, when the competition will hopefully take place. , again.

Audience member Abbie Overson said she was curious to see who would win next year. “There is a bit of a rivalry between French and Italian clubs,” she said.

Kennedy said the idea is that the program will run annually, with hosting responsibilities shifting from club to club. “As long as everyone wants to do it, we’ll keep doing it,” she said.

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James C. Tibbs