Open mic night provides artistic outlet, support for victims of domestic abuse

Biology major freshman Vimbayi Mandizha (pictured left) read poetry as audience members like Women’s Action Coalition vice president Jennifer Galvao (pictured right) watched at the open mic event on Sunday Oct. 21. The event was organized to raise money for victims of domestic violence (Catherine White/editor-in-chief).

On the top floor of the Union lies the Fireside Lounge, a hidden corner of Geneseo. On Sunday Oct. 21 from 3 to 5, the room was decorated with champagne colored balloons and streamers. This decor was for the open mic event put together by Geneseo’s very own Women’s Action Coalition. 

Performers, club members and spectators filled the room while awaiting the show, which supported speaking out against domestic violence. Items like pins and bracelets were available for purchase with suggested donations in order to support victims of abuse. 

The room became more intimate once students began standing to perform. Observers heard a variety of music, ranging from the acoustic guitar to the banjo to talented voices. 

A special treat was when biology major freshman Vimbayi Mandizha  shared her poetry with the room. Her work was very appropriate for the event as it focused on the violence and danger women face daily for simply existing. It was a very heavy and honest piece and it received rave reviews from audience members.

With events like this, it has been easier for her to share her work. 

“I’ve been looking for more outlets for poetry,” Mandizha said. 

It’s important for Geneseo to have outlets like this for students to present their work in a safe space and embrace other people’s work. It helps performers build confidence while inspiring the listeners and spreading a message. 

By hosting this event, WAC accomplished just that while supporting such a relevant cause. With the current state of the world and media, women need to know that there are safe places to go and people who will listen to their truth without any judgment or disbelief. 

WAC vice president Jennifer Galvao has been part of this club since her freshman year. 

“Since I was a freshman, we’ve had [an open mic night] every October,” Galvao said. “At this point, it’s more of a tradition for the club to put on the event.”

This kind of tradition helps students find a way to present their work while helping victims of domestic violence by either donating, performing, finding out more information on the cause or by joining the club.