After a year-long hiatus, Fullerton College’s Quadchella returned Friday virtually with the new name Zoomchella; it was a mix of live and prerecorded performances ranging from ’90s R&B covers to original poetry readings.
Quadchella and Zoomchella were created as the Fullerton College version of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, an influencer-heavy yearly event featuring the biggest names in music performing show-stopping performances.
At Zoomchella, students put on cowboy hats and light-up sunglasses to watch artists perform from bedrooms, virtual gardens and cars. Some cosmetology students even brought in their mannequin heads to view the show with them.
The event organizers, Fullerton College Associated Students, began by asking the audience to list their favorite artists, noting the role music has played in helping people endure the pandemic.
Once the performances began, audience members remained silent, yet they could be seen cheering from within the chat. Clapping emoticons adorned the audience’s screens as well.
“Yes!!! Fabulous job, Asia and Chloe!!!!!!!! YOU SOUNDED SO GOOD,” typed Fullerton College music major Jaysson Yriarte.
Yriarte was referring to a performance by Fullerton College Opera students Asia Myers and Chloe Jane Reyes in which they did a rendition of “Via resti, servita” from “The Marriage of Figaro.” Myers and Ryes played two women fighting for the same man. While the video shows them singing and arguing side-by-side, both parts were filmed remotely.
Seven performances were put on in total; three of which were from the FC Opera Workshop and four featured members from AS. Other than those two shared characteristics, the acts varied widely in genre and performance style.
Erin Lacorte read an original poem with the popular “lofi hip hop radio” girl as her virtual background. Wladimir Mendoza, who played the mandolin, gave the audience one encore after another with songs from South America, Mexico and Japan.
Vice President of Activities and Zoomchella event organizer, Madison DeVries said that she looked forward to seeing her sister Kennedy Devries perform a song in French as a tribute to her time spent in the French program at Fullerton College.
Despite some technical difficulties, audience comments and reactions were nothing but positive.
At the end of the concert, Fullerton College President Greg Schulz entered the meeting with pictures from the first Quadchella in 2015. An audience member recalled a performance where Schulz himself played the drums onstage.
Although Quadchella had moved to Zoom, its goal of celebrating students and bringing them together remains the same, according to event organizer Madison DeVries.
“The performances today had so much character and charisma to them,” said Yriarte. “I very much appreciate this Zoom meeting since it’s been so long to have music apart from online.”
A full recording of Zoomchella will be posted on the Fullerton College Associated Students website.