This past weekend, Hanover College played host to the pop-rock band, hellogoodbye. The concert itself was pretty good, not spectacular, but still good. The experience, on the other hand, was extremely unique.
I have been to two Vans Warped Tours, which is an all-day event composed of about 50 bands, all performing throughout the day. Warped Tour’s claim-to-fame comes from the band-crowd interaction.
The bands all have signing times, some walk around the grounds saying hi to people, and most try to interact with their audience when performing. However, at a single Warped Tour event (in Noblesville, Ind.) there can be up to 24,000 people in attendance (thank you, Google). Hanover has nowhere near that many students, and on Friday (if I had to guess) maybe only 70 students showed up.
Warped Tour had nothing on the crowd interaction hellogoodbye was able to bring to Hanover. Not only did they play some riffs from the beginning to “Freebird” (much to some random students’ delights), but the band also borrowed a hat from the audience to wear while playing an old classic (“Here in Your Arms”).
After the concert, the band hung around, signed things, took pictures with everyone and just talked to students. Even though a music critic may not find the band to be awe inspiring, it was still a neat experience to talk with some of them. I mean come on. Back in their prime they were on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Last Call with Carson Daly” and have toured with Hanson (who knew the “MMMbop” boys were still around?).
This is the second post I have written now about how Hanover’s small size has been a good thing, so I’ll try to not write directly about that anymore. But I do have a few last words on the subject.
I am not saying a big school is a bad school. In fact, I am considering IU Bloomington, Purdue and even Notre Dame for graduate school (if I do go to graduate school). What I am saying, is that Hanover’s size has not been detrimental to my college experience in any way thus far.
One of the most popular critiques of Hanover is that “it is too small.” I agree that it’s small, but no matter where you go you tend to carve out your own niche anyway, so I don’t think the number of people is the problem. I do see some of the advantages a big school offers, but I honestly believe that the benefits of a small school (like Hanover) far outweigh the disadvantages.
Some prospective students also think that they can’t go from a big high school to a small college because that would be “backwards,” “weird” or “a shock.” To that, I say my graduating class had nearly 600 students and the Main Campus and Freshman Campus played host to more than 2,400 students, and I had no trouble adjusting to life at Hanover.
Just don’t let Hanover’s size cloud your thinking in a negative way. There are many benefits to be had (like meeting semi-famous bands).