Rea and Laughlin RHC host open mic


Courtesy of Chatham Student Affairs

On Friday, January 9, Rea and Laughlin’s Residence Hall Council (RHC) opened their doors once again for their Open Mic Night.

The Rea Coffeehouse served as the designated venue for this special event. Students filled the main room and food and drinks were served throughout. Laced with graffiti stained walls, the location added to the sense of intimacy and “realness,” one student stated, while also creating a cool background for the performers.

As a returning RHC member, and co–organizer for the event, Abigail Beckwith was excited for the announcement of the Open Mic Night once again.

Courtesy of Chatham Student Affairs
Courtesy of Chatham Student Affairs

“We came up with the idea for the event last semester and it was a hit,” Beckwith said.

Beckwith went on to explain the importance of the event as a place where,  “expression is valued,” and, “students aren’t pressured to perform [the way they are] in similar events such as the talent show where judges are present.”

Beckwith also stated that while there was a mic and a stage, students were, “welcomed to share their experience,” through any medium and were, “encouraged to take advantage of the safe space.”

The atmosphere was warm and inviting, with many students claiming a sense of ease as they supported their fellow classmates. The mix was diverse with performances by many different Chatham women. While students took to the stage they were met with a promising applause that was calming for the nerves. Many who attended had never gone to an open mic and were excited to be a part of a new experience.

Courtesy of Chatham Student Affairs
Courtesy of Chatham Student Affairs

Encouraged by the crowd, sophomore Tahmina Tursonzadah showed her support for the event by performing an act of her own. Tursonzadah wowed the crowd with her rendition of “Fine By Me” by Andy Grammer.

She later stated how participating in an open mic, “gives students a chance to express themselves in an unique environment that they may not find somewhere else.” Tursonzadah also went on to say how proud she was as a former RHC member to be able to, “come back and share the stage with such wonderful women.”

As the night went on the performances ranged from poetry to spoken word as students told their stories to an eager crowd. Many told tales of personal triumph along with affirmations of their worth that brought the audience to a grand applause.

As the night dwindled down, sophomore Suzi Nanthavong, another member of Rea and Laughlin’s RHC was content with the evenings turnout.

“The event seemed like a success, lots of people showed up and had a really good time,” she said.

Sophomore Megan A. Cooper, also a member of the RHC, was, “pleasantly surprised,” stating that the, “first week back can be hard, but I was thoroughly impressed with the support from the Chatham community.”

Cooper further explained how the committee was concerned with the turnout due to short notice, but nevertheless was, “highly entertained.”