A variety of performers showed off their unique talents for a worthy cause at Alpha Phi Omega’s “Geneseo Performs: Make Wishes Come True” benefit concert for the Make-A-Wish Foundation in Sturges Auditorium on Saturday Nov. 8. Juniors Nicole Peinkofer and Phoebe Phelps decided to plan a performance-based fundraiser and worked together to make the event happen. “People like to be entertained, so we thought putting on a benefit concert would draw a crowd and enable us to make as much money as possible for Make-A-Wish,” Peinkofer said.
Peinkofer and Phelps specifically chose Make-A-Wish Western New York because it benefits the local community. The organizers learned about the donation process through their contact with the foundation’s local representative. Peinkofer explained that their correspondence—her favorite part about organizing the event—truly inspired her.
The organization’s goal was to raise money to help fund a child’s wish––the Make-A-Wish website states that the average cost is $7,500. The fundraiser raised $100, falling short of APO’s goal. “Although it may not be nearly enough money to grant a wish, we brought a child just that much closer to their dream,” Peinkofer said.
The two-hour concert consisted of close to 20 acts. It started off with a series of a cappella performances. One of newest co-ed a cappella groups on campus Emmelodics was first to perform with Phil Collin’s “On My Way.” Hips ‘n Harmony brought the audience back to the early 2000s with an entertaining Brittany Spears medley, including the hit “Oops!...I Did It Again” and “Lucky.” Each group offered something different through their style and choice of song.
After five a cappella groups performed, it was time for other group and individual performances. Some students performed songs by popular artists such as Coldplay and Beyoncé. G-Steppas made their way on stage, creating rhythm with stomping feet and moving bodies. A majority of the show consisted of student songwriters who performed original pieces and played instruments, demonstrating great skill and creativity.
Some of the most unique acts included performances of slam poetry, beatboxing and live looping—a performance in which the artist creates music through repeating a section of sound material and continually overlapping it from a digital machine. The concert ended with Geneseo Bhangra taking the stage with coordinated Bollywood-inspired dances, lighting up the auditorium with energetic music and bright smiles.
The concert offered students an opportunity to perform in a comfortable setting while also helping raise money. Peinkofer explained that even though organizing the event was demanding, it was ultimately worth it.
“Knowing how we would be making someone’s life just a little bit better in some way really motivated me throughout the entire process,” she said.