Associated Student Productions brings concerts back to the BMU


The Welcome Back concert was a big success. Multiple students came out to dance and have a good time while also supporting the efforts of A.S. Productions. Photo courtesy of Aubrie Coley

The Bell Memorial Union has been a study hub and cafeteria for years. A.S. Productions has tried to add to the overall atmosphere of the BMU by adding live entertainment, including both local and not local artists and soon, comedians.

The A.S. Productions new manager Hugh Hammond has a plan to start with booking artists that students maybe haven’t heard of before while also putting on different types of concerts, comedian shows and maybe some poets, according to Hammond.

“The main effect of doing ‘smaller acts’ is that we can spread out our budget. I want to do a large quantity of shows,” Hammond said.

Booking local artists and not-local rising artists allows A.S. Productions to put on a concert every Wednesday from noon to 1 p.m. and one or two big performances in the BMU Auditorium every month.

“We are going to be focused on bringing a lot of live entertainment…shows you couldn’t put on in your backyard,” Hammond said.

The shows the program has put on so far, like bringing artists such as Frank Ray and SARO, have all been put on in the BMU Auditorium. They started using fog machines and lights that haven’t been used in the BMU for almost eight years.

“A.S. Productions is funded by student fees and I want to make sure that I am responsible with that budget, that (I) have student input and I want to make sure that everybody is on board,” Hammond said on the funding and budget that the program is dealing with now.

Out of student tuition fees come a lot of programs and A.S. Productions is one of them. Using this small budget, they have already rented two fog machines and some laser lights to make the concerts more dynamic. Ultimately, every choice the program makes has the students in mind and this is to make sure that every dollar students put into the program doesn’t go to waste and that the students get to enjoy the fruits of the fees.

“Having a big group of students that believe in and who can help shape what it (AS Productions) becomes is ideal,” Hammond said. “I want student input.”

The program runs with the help of students. Currently, Hammond is going through the process of putting together his team of student hires. This team will help with lights, event planning and the overall process of figuring out what this program will look like in the future.

He also emphasized the need for volunteers and if there are students who want to help with any of the concerts, they should. It is a chance to work with artists and give to a program that is trying to add another “layer of fun” to the BMU and the resources that it has for students, according to Hammond.

“Dream big,” Hammond said. “We have an opportunity here to really create something from the ground up. I would love for people to get involved who are excited for what we are doing and want to help spread the word.”

Hannah Yeager can be reached at [email protected] or @Hannah_K_Yeager on Twitter.