Host and president of Zeta Phi Beta Brianna Brown. Photo by Jasmyne Ray.
The Zeta Phi Beta sorority hosted a talent show in Farmer Hall on Thursday, Nov. 6.
Flyers placed around campus promoting the event called it a “neo-soul” talent show based on the genre of music made famous by artists like Erykah Badu, Jill Scott and Frank Ocean.
“It’s not specifically a ‘Neo-Soul’ show, but a talent show,” Brianna Brown, president and sole member of Zeta Phi Beta explained. “Anybody can come and perform whatever talent they want.” During the show, Brown demonstrated her talent of spinning poi socks, a type of performance art where the performer swings tethered weights around in different patterns and shapes.
Singers Nikki Johnson, a freshman art major, and Alexandria Cottrell, a first year clinical mental health counseling graduate student, started the show. Johnson performed an original song and Cottrell performed a gospel song. During his a capella of Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep”, Marcos Cruz, a junior communications major, managed to get the crowd to stomp their feet and clap along.
Sophomore fine arts major Miguel Fernandez, or “Sax Guy” as he’s been dubbed on the Yik Yak app, performed his version of “Ratatat 9”. Johnson hit the stage again to perform an original rap and sophomore elementary education major Tiffany Thomas followed by giving the second gospel performance of the night.
Artemus Hill, a senior accounting major, gave a spoken word performance of a poem titled “A Few Minutes Ago”, which, he joked, was written a few minutes prior to getting on stage.
Kahlil Kyles, a freshman theater major, set the stage on fire with his dance to Destiny’s Child’s “Lose My Breath”, earning cheers of approval ranging from “yasss” to “slay.” EJ Dillon-Smith had some of the ladies in the audience on their feet during his a cappella of the ‘90s hit “If I Ever Fall in Love” by R&B group Shai.
The last performance of the night came from Parker Cantrell, a junior art education major, who had joined Special Helms, a freshman biology major, on stage for a charming duet of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” earlier in the show. Admitting that he was a little nervous before beginning, he encouraged everyone to join him in singing if they knew the song. In turn, the show ended with everyone in attendance swaying and singing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” in harmony.