Geographer, whysowhite play A&O’s third annual DM benefit

Whysowhite singer Nick McMillan interacts with the crowd during the A&O Benefit Concert held on Sunday afternoon. A&O teamed up with Dance Marathon to fundraise for DM 2014.

Melody Song/Daily Senior Staffer

Whysowhite singer Nick McMillan interacts with the crowd during the A&O Benefit Concert held on Sunday afternoon. A&O teamed up with Dance Marathon to fundraise for DM 2014.

Amy Whyte, Reporter

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Rock music attracted Northwestern students and Evanston residents to Norris University Center’s East Lawn on Sunday afternoon for a benefit concert featuring Geographer and whysowhite.

Nearly 250 students gathered outside Norris for a concert hosted as part of A&O Productions’ co-sponsorship with Dance Marathon. Attendance was free, though a $5 donation was suggested. Money raised at the concert will go toward the 2014 DM beneficiary.

“It went really well,” said DM spokesman David Harris, a SESP junior. “The concert’s a lot of fun, and it’s a great opportunity for us to collaborate with A&O.”

The concert was opened by whysowhite, who tried to pump up audience members, despite slightly cold weather conditions, by asking them to dance. The Chicago-based band made several shout-outs to the crowd, pausing between songs to acknowledge their Evanston heritage.

“We chose whysowhite partly just because they’re great, but also because some of them are Northwestern alum and current students,” A&O concerts chair Justin Lehmann said. ” Having people be able to come back to school and play for their friends was really nifty.”

The band, which includes current Weinberg senior Andrew Abramowitz and alumnus Chris Miller (Bienen ’11), played a mix of original songs and covers, including renditions of “You Make Me Feel Like Dancing” and the “All That” theme song.

After a short intermission, headliner Geographer came on stage. Despite cooling temperatures, many students stayed outside and danced in front of the stage.

“I heard about them a few weeks ago and started listening to their stuff and really liked it,” said attendee Sunny Lee, a Weinberg junior. “And then I found out they were coming here, so that was exciting.”

Lehmann said Geographer was a good choice for the show because of its “good, relaxed vibe.”

Shelly Tan, A&O’s co-director of marketing and media, said the concert was great because it got students outside and raised money and awareness for “one of the most important organizations on campus.”

“Both bands are really fun and really great for just chilling on an afternoon,” the Medill junior said.

Lehmann said the afternoon setting and outdoor venue are taken into account when planning this benefit.

“Bands work well for this show,” the Weinberg senior said. “A band you can easily come see and enjoy, whether you know their music or not.”

Correction: A previous version of the caption accompanying this story misidentified the subject of the photo. The singer pictured is Nick McMillan. The Daily regrets the error.

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