Pi Kappa Phi’s Duet for Abilities filled the Warren Ballrooms this past Tuesday. The fraternity held a talent show that showcased ten duets performed by members of different fraternities and sororities on campus. The event gave members of Greek life at Plattsburgh State a chance to showcase their talents while raising money for charity.
The panel of judges included chemistry professor Nancy Parri, director of fraternity and sorority life Allison Swick-Duttine and chemistry professor Ed Miller.. Miller and Parri served as faculty advisors to Pi Kappa Phi.
Contestants were judged based on preparedness and execution and attendance. Upon arriving at the event, attendees were asked which performer they were supporting and brother of Pi Kappa Phi tallied the points.
Members of the fraternity lined the back of the Warren Ballroom, selling raffle tickets for gift cards to local eateries including Five Guys, Chipotle, Giuseppe’s, Texas Roadhouse, Dickey’s.Tickets for the fourth annual Duet for Abilities event cost $3 and event coordinator Aaron Lowes estimated three-hundred tickets were sold.
Funds raised at the event through ticket sales and raffles was donated to the Ability Experience.
“Roughly $ 1,000 was raised for the Ability Experience and we increased attendance since last year,” Steven Vecerina said. “Last year’s attendance was roughly half tonight of what we had.”
Vecerina, a member of the Inter-Fraternity Council, has been to all four of Pi Kappa Phi’s Duets for Disabilities events.
Lowes agreed with Vecerina and thinks this year’s strong attendance is because of the increased advertising efforts made by the fraternity this year.
To raise awareness, posters were hung in the Angell College Center, a Facebook page was created and brothers invited more than 500 students.
The event began with Lowes and his co-host Tyler Mott introducing the panel of judges.
Lowes and Mott then showed attendees and performers a video detailing the fraternity’s commitment to excellence called ‘An Exceptional Experience.’
Pi Kappa Phi’s Executive Director Emeritus Durward Owen appears mid-way saying “our effort was to get college students, specifically ones from our fraternity, more involved in the outer world.”
The first performers were the only non-vocal act. Sister of Delta Phi Epsilon performed a dance to Desert by Dawin. The song featuresd a contrast of traditional R&B song with a trap style chorus and a slower melodious chorus. The sisters choreographed a mixture of ballet and new-age swing dancing.
The night’s winners, Lauren Ciaccio and Katie Aroune, were representative of Sigma Delta Tau. The pair chose a mashup of ‘Rumor Has It’ and ‘Someone Like You’, both by Adele. The duo said the performance came together the weekend prior.
“We got the idea of a mashup from watching Glee” Aroune said.
The two singers went home with $200 for their sororities philanthropy, which is prevent child abuse America.
Other performances included members of the Chi Phi fraternity Ryan Baldry and Christopher Ponterotto. The performance started with Baldry taking the stage with a guitar before Ponterotto interrupted him yelling “you can’t play guitar”. In the following moments the two stood on stage squabbling before bursting into a performance Stevie Wonder’s ‘Isn’t She Lovely.’
Other highlights of the show were guitarists Kevin Morley of Sigma Tau Gamma and Marcello of Phi Mu Delta.
Morley played guitar while Lauren Abrams of Alpha Epsilon Phi gave an acoustic performance of Love Yourself by Justin Bieber. Tyler Smith of Sigma Tau Gamma performed an “acoustic mashup” that paired Blink-182’s ‘I Miss You’ with and Ed Sheeran’s Photograph alongside Morley. Throughout the night performers felt the encouragement from the crowd and specifically their fraternity members who’d take photos, dance and sing as if they were on stage. Lowes describes the event as total success and says he looks forward to seeing how next year’s Duet with Disabilities can expand.
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