By Zach Colick
Arizona Daily Wildcat
August 22, 2005
Performing artist Jason Mraz is coming to the UA in September to prove he's "all about the wordplay" in a concert performance at Centennial Hall.
The show is sponsored by the Associated Students of the University of Arizona and is scheduled for Sept. 21 at 6:30 p.m.
Tickets go on sale Thursday for students and on Friday for the general public at the UA Centennial Hall box office, 1020 E. University Blvd. The tickets will run students $22 and the public $27.
Ryan Patterson, special events coordinator for ASUA, said he wanted to give students an opportunity to buy tickets a day early, in hopes of having an all-student show to fill the more than 2,400-seat venue.
"I would be thrilled if students bought all those tickets on Thursday," said Patterson, a third-year law student. "Jason is absolutely amazing in concert and it's music everybody's into right now. Centennial Hall is an amazing acoustic venue, which will be great for Jason's sound."
As special events coordinator, Patterson has a budget set aside to bring in big-name acts. He couldn't say how much Mraz would be making for the performance because of financial logistics with Centennial Hall, but he said Mraz would not be paid until the night of the show.
Patterson said ASUA doesn't make a profit from the show, but rather, tries to break even in hopes of entertaining and "bringing in as many students as possible."
Mraz, whose hits include "The Remedy," "You & I Both" and new single "Wordplay," was asked in June to perform at the UA.
According to Mraz's Web site, he will be hitting up four other universities in the month of September, including Arizona State University, to tour his new album, Mr. A-Z.
Mraz and his management were more than willing to return to Arizona, Patterson said, where they have been warmly received in concerts and on 92.9 FM's "Studio C," which is also sponsoring the show with on-air promotions.
Melanie Levine, a media arts senior, said she is a fan of Mraz and thinks it's great the UA has the opportunity to showcase his musical talents.
"I can't believe that he would be playing here," Levine said. "I am sure a lot of people would be happy and go to see him."
Levine said she's been impressed with some of the talent ASUA has been able to bring to the UA over the years, and said it is a great opportunity for students to see artists for a cheaper price.
Opening music acts Dropping Daylight and local band Ryanhood will kickoff the performance.
CatFest set for Thursday
The pop-punk quartet band Rufio will be performing at this year's CatFest, an annual concert that opens the beginning of each school year.
The concert is free of charge with a CatCard and will be held Thursday night inside the Student Union Memorial Center's Grand Ballroom at 7:30 p.m., said Ryan Patterson, special events coordinator for ASUA.
The Grand Ballroom holds 2,000 people and ASUA and the University Activities Board's goal is for tickets to sell out, Patterson said
Patterson said it's great to have some big-name acts like Jason Mraz and Rufio right as school is getting started. He said these two acts should be more popular and bring in more students than performances of year's past.
Evan Orenstein, a finance junior, said he is excited for Rufio's performance and thinks there will be a large turnout because of the band's popularity.
"It's really cool that a band like Rufio can take the time to play a free show at the U of A," said. "I'm sure there are a lot of people who will come to the show and support such a great band."