This week on the EXCEL Log, we are featuring student project, Third Place Music Fest, organized by Wesley Hornpetrie (MM ’18), Kaleigh Wilder (MM ’19), and Clay Gonzalez (current MM […]
This week on the EXCEL Log, we are featuring student project, Third Place Music Fest, organized by Wesley Hornpetrie (MM ’18), Kaleigh Wilder (MM ’19), and Clay Gonzalez (current MM student). Now in its third season, the Third Place Concert Series, curated by Wesley, facilitates monthly concerts in local Ann Arbor venues and businesses. This past summer, Kaleigh and Clay joined the team to produce the First Annual Third Place Music Fest. The Festival ran from May 8th to 11th and featured over 20 different acts. We got to talk to Wesley and Kaleigh about the Festival.
EXCEL: What is the mission of the Third Place Music Fest?
Wesley: We give an opportunity for local musicians to show their stuff in local third places. That’s where the name comes from. The Third Place is an Urban Sociology term. Everyone in communities, they have their first place — their home — and their second place is their work. And they need their third place, which needs to be a place to gather and to meet new people and old friends. And it needs to be affordable. This is our version of it via a music festival.
EXCEL: Who performed at the festival?
Kaleigh: We had over 20 groups ranging from your “typical” classical string quartet all the way to performance art. There was math rock, free improvisation, interdisciplinary acts that combined music and dance, and jazz. I personally think this festival is important because, while there are a lot of great opportunities here in Ann Arbor, this festival allowed us to showcase other musical varieties and flavors that you don’t always get to see. And, it was in really accessible public spaces.
Wesley: Third Place Music Fest is where quirky artists and artists on the fringes of the mainstream get to come out and be heard and feel accepted.
EXCEL: The Festival was such a good time, and it was only your first year! How did you set up the Festival for success?
Wesley: The TPMF was successful I think because of the combination of local artists in local spaces. The celebration of that intersection was something very special for the musicians, participating venues, and businesses in the greater Ann Arbor community. We brought the greater community to the next level of local arts scene I’m guessing the average Ann Arbor resident wasn’t aware even existed. This combination of financial and physical accessibility made it home grown and something for people to feel connected to in an authentic way.
Kaleigh: We also have to thank the EXCEL Enterprise Fund. Receiving those funds allowed us to book Kerrytown Concert House, which is a performance venue staple in the Ann Arbor community. It also helped us with our printing costs and just the logistical financial elements of the festival.
The Excel Enterprise Fund is a funding resource for SMTD students. The deadline for Round 2 of applications is November 8th, 2019. For more information, visit https://smtd.umich.edu/departments/entrepreneurship-leadership/excellab/ or stop by the EXCEL Lab in Moore.