Arena wows Weezer

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September 26, 2010

When Bradley students were asked which high profile band should christen the new arena, they called for Weezer. And today, Weezer called the arena “perfect.”

“They walked into the arena and all said, ‘Wow, what a cool venue,’” said Dain Gotto, Bradley’s assistant director of student activities. "This band has toured all over the world for 18 years, so for them to express such appreciation for the venue – what an incredible testament to the quality of our new arena."

Thousands from the Bradley Family and beyond filled the arena for its first concert, excited to hear the Grammy award-winning rock band, and just as anxious to behold the Hilltop’s newest addition.

Freshman Yara Bittar, an avid fan of the alternative rock group, said she must have been one of the first in line when tickets went on sale. When she arrived on concert night, she was immediately impressed with the set-up inside the arena.

“It looked incredible, from the stage to the lights and the big ‘Weezer’ sign,” said Bittar, who added, “Weezer was a great choice for a first concert because they have very wide appeal.”

Weezer headlined a new era for Bradley tonight, one that builds on the University’s tradition of attracting big stars to Peoria. The same hospitality that drew famous acts to the Robertson Memorial Field House remains, now complemented by state-of-the-art audio, visual, and lighting technology, and increased seating.

“It is exciting to see the tradition of internationally-known talent performing on the Hilltop carry over from the Field House to this impressive new arena,” said President Joanne Glasser.  “We continue that tradition next month as Jay Leno headlines at the arena as part of Homecoming activities.”

Attracting big names to campus gives students involved with the Activities Council of Bradley University (ACBU) hands-on experience planning and facilitating major events. As co-coordinator of ACBU’s Special Events Reserve Fund, senior public relations major Natalee Runyan was involved in the Weezer concert from concept to completion.

“I now have experience doing everything that goes into a major production, from getting the contract, to doing the marketing, to organizing the ticketing, security, and production,” said Runyan. “It will be very meaningful to have this high profile, very successful event on my résumé.”

And now Weezer can add Bradley University to its impressive résumé.

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