Written by: Alex and Nivhya
Edited by: Supriya
Approaching the 2nd month of the movement control order (MCO) as I look at the ceiling while the ceiling looks back at me, it is without a doubt that the introverts are having a blast during this period. Not forgetting the fun we college and university students have to live without. Rock cafe, black ink, pyramid, lunchbox and not to forget, bubble tea.
Freshies Night, that almost a thousand students were expecting in April has been cancelled due to the pandemic. However, we were lucky enough to interview the organizing team to spill some tea on things to expect after MCO is over. Freshies night has been an annual event since 2011. It is a night to share the Sunway culture through food, dance, music and all-round fun. The time where social media would be blasting with tweets and hashtags. Well, isn’t that why we are known as the #mosthappeningcampus?
Out of 100%, the organizing team had completed more than 60% of the work before the MCO was implemented. Some of them were completing the designs for the posters and crew shirts while others dealt with ticketing, buntings, banners and all marketing stuff. The team also managed to make an eye-catching promotion video with the big logo of the astronaut with the guitar and even prepared all necessary event equipment for the actual day.
Every step was, without a doubt, a challenge for the organizing team. We asked them to brief us over some of the storms they had to push through in organising Freshies Night 2020. Here’s what they had to say: Firstly, they had to attract guests to the event which was done through interesting promotions and activities that suit the students’ cup of tea. Secondly, with the limited amount of budget, the team had to reach out to secure potential sponsors after thorough analysis (which they actually succeeded in!). Lastly, maintaining effective communication was tough, especially involving more than 50 people in a team.
The organizing team mentioned that they were disheartened to have had cancelled Freshies 2020 in light of the Covid-19 situation. However, as student council representatives, they understood the responsibility to take necessary precaution by cancelling the event to minimize mass gatherings in this time of crisis. Do keep in mind that this decision was made way before the MCO was implemented. Hence, kudos to the team for making the right choice for the health and safety of our students!
Since we couldn’t attend the event in person, we asked the organising committee to give us a little virtual sneak peek as to what we missed out this year! Here’s a virtual walkthrough:
The doors (on the day of the event ) were to officially open at 7.00 pm and the aim was to provide the guests with a night of performances and excitement. The theme for this year’s Freshies Night 2020 is the galaxy. Despite the theme being a subject that is challenging to be captured physically (in reference to the event logo), the core committee made the final decision to incorporate a relatable figure of the theme into the logo itself. Thus, the representation of an astronaut with a guitar. While the astronaut foreshadows to our audience indulging on Freshies Night as an incomparable extent; the guitar itself has a rather simple definition of representing the highlight of every year’s Freshies Night – the rave session. Last but not least, there is a subtle hint in the background where a nonagon shape behind the astronaut could be seen, symbolising the 9th consecutive Freshies Night to be held.
Auditions for the event were held for two days, 18th & 19th of February 2020. There were many types of performances including singing, dancing, acting as well as performers working with the band. All performers were indeed talented and extremely well-prepared. The crew also invited the Sunway Dance Club (SDC) to perform. And this year, they were prepared to steal the spotlight with more than 15 talented dancers!
Unfortunately, in light of the MCO, the core committee, as well as the advisors from Student Life, have decided to cancel Freshies Night 2020. While this decision may be devastating for some of our students and crew, the committee believes this is a sacrifice that has to be made to keep the whole situation under control; or rather further impacting it negatively. Despite the issue of huge gatherings being banned in the country, for the time being, the initial announcement of the first lockdown back in March prompted the team to cancel any bookings from all of Freshies Night 2020’s vendors. As a result, this will cause a huge delay in rescheduling the event even after the MCO has ended.
Since the organizing committee had to cancel the event, they have decided to do a full refund for those who paid the tickets in advance through online banking. They have created a google form, available from their social media, to fill up customer details and after the money has been transferred, a receipt is given as proof.
As always, let us stay positive and hope that next years’ freshies night would be back with a bang that will bring even more excitement and better performances!