The Long Beach State Music Festival streams as a live virtual concert on Zoom hosted by Theatre Threshold on Nov. 20.
According to Theatre Threshold’s Facebook, the festival is meant to celebrate and support the creativity of the students in the theatre department.
Ubaldo Ortiz, a first-year sociology major, said he found the post on Theatre Threshold’s Instagram page and messaged the account for more information.
Ortiz said that he wanted to get involved with the school, and realized that during this time of virtual instruction, clubs like Theatre Threshold may have trouble getting students to engage.
“I didn’t want to just go for them, but I also wanted to go for me so that I don’t just have to deal with academics, and academics and academics,” Ortiz said. “I found it as a door for something fun rather than just everything being about academics in general.”
Ortiz will be performing “You’ll Be Back,” a song from the musical “Hamilton” by Lin-Manuel Miranda at the festival.
Like Ortiz, Britney Gomez-Landeros, a first-year theatre major, said that she wanted to get involved at CSULB. She heard about the audition from a friend and reached out to the director. Then, she had a one-on-one meeting to show off her singing and playing the ukulele.
“I wanted to put myself out there as much as I can and I feel like this is another way to be able to do that,” Gomez-Landeros said. “I’m really scared about my music, it’s something I’m really vulnerable with and shy, I saw it and said, ‘Okay, let’s do it.’”
Mean Monthon, a fourth-year theatre major and director of the festival, said that technology was something organizers struggled with.
For Ortiz, he said that he didn’t have a tripod so he had to use chairs to film his footage for the audition. Meanwhile, Gomez said that her family would disrupt her by coming in her room while she was taping, which forced her to start over multiple times.
Monthon said that preparing for the concert was not easy, requiring more work due to it being online.
While those setbacks frustrated Monthon, he said he learned that things won’t always go as planned.
But participants like Ortiz said that he hopes that the audience can see this as an opportunity to do something fun during this time.
“You don’t just have to stay at home or just be at school or go to work, there’s other ways for you to find fun,” Ortiz said. “Everyone should just go ahead and look for these opportunities as just a way to get your mind off of your work and it just relieves you.”
Matthew Dickson, staff writer, contributed to this article.