Freshmen Fanfare: an annual tradition where freshmen officially make their first impression to upperclassmen, family and faculty on campus.
“I heard Freshman Fanfare was a lot of fun and I love acting crazy,” Emma Duncan, a freshman participant in Fanfare, said. “It was so fun to be a part of and it gave me the opportunity to meet so many people.”
Duncan said Fanfare allowed the freshman class to get to know each other outside of the classroom and get outside of their comfort zones.
The feature acts, under the instruction of junior Colby Lauxman, performed songs such as “Love Song” by Sara Bareilles and “Beauty School Dropout” from the musical “Grease.”
“I’m really proud of the students — the upperclassman that don’t get paid to help or receive credit for the jobs they are doing,” Staff Director Amanda Watson said. “They have given their time to lead and help the freshman put on the best possible Fanfare.”
The group acts, under Jones’ instruction, parodied songs such as “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves and “Burnin’ Up” by the Jonas Brothers.
The rewritten lyrics dealt with the struggles of being the new kids on campus, failing to wake up to alarms for class, getting a ‘Ring by Spring’ and Chick-Fil-A.
“Freshman Fanfare was an entertaining show this year,” senior Tanner Bentley said. “They held their theme of ‘Inside Out’ throughout the show. There were lots of laughs due to the emcees dialogues and blurbs.”
The freshman emcees were Abigail Kent as Joy, Parker Cannefax as Fear, Marcus Leonard as Anger, Laura Smethers as Disgust, Whitney Littrell as Sadness, Grant Reinoehl as Bing Bong and Riley Wilson as Riley.
Families, friends, peers and alumni filled Hardeman Auditorium to support the freshman class.
“I came to watch the freshmen that I met at Earn Your Wings and through summer camps over the year,” senior Chris Crowder said. “It’s nice to see them comfortable with being goofballs on-stage.”
Freshman Fanfare 2016 marked the 27th year of the two show event. However, it marked Watson’s first year of supervising the production.
“I felt prepared for [Freshman Fanfare] because of my experience with Spring Sing,” Watson, the student events coordinator for Oklahoma Christian University, said. “I think if I would have just been put into it without the Spring Sing experience I would not have a clue, but I really enjoyed my time directing this show.”
According to Watson, the freshmen had four weeks of practice leading up to Fanfare.
Watson said she was impressed with how the freshmen had fun preparing for the show but also knew when to be serious.
“It was fun to do it with the students in the freshman class and getting to know them at this time because usually I don’t see them until they’re in Spring Sing or until they’re in a club,” Watson said. “I really don’t know them and so I see all these strangers walking around campus and now they’re not strangers to me.”
Watson said she was not only impressed with the freshman class and their dedication to the show, but also the dedication of student director Jenni Jones.
“Something I wanted to do this year is give Jenni Jones, the student director, more freedom to create ownership and create her vision,” Watson said. “She already had songs written and was able to create more from the beginning, so I think it made for a more cohesive show. I think people noticed and realized that watching the show. It’s not a random talent show, it was a production that was purposeful and intentional.”
Watson said some students who were not sure if they wanted to be a part of Fanfare because it was outside of their comfort zones have come and thanked her for pushing them to be involved in this production.