May Ball returns to campus with a bang

FRIDAY saw the May Ball return to campus for the first time in several years, with multiple acts performing on the different stages and attractions spread over campus.

Headliner Tinchy Stryder performed in the Great Hall, despite stating on his Twitter he had problems with his eye. Stryder performed a comprehensive set, including his well-known single ‘Number 1’. As the final act of the night, he brought activities in the Arts Centre to a great close.

stryder Photo: Daniel Quigley

Stryder brought the night to a close, despite suffering a black eye / Photo: Daniel Quigley

Before Stryder took to the stage, the Indie band The Futureheads, from Sunderland, performed. They played several songs from their last album, which was recorded entirely A Cappella, proving that there was certainly diversity in musical-tastes at the May Ball.

futureheads Photo: Daniel Quigley

The Futureheads provided diversity in musical tastes / Photo: Daniel Quigley

Sam and the Womp’s performance concurred this, as the act mixed elements of electro dance and traditional Balkan music, resulting in the unique sound of their debut single ‘Bom Bom’. In an exclusive interview with ASM, they revealed that their second single was due to be released in August this year.

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Gentleman’s Dub Club rocked the crowd with “Emergency” / Photo: Daniel Quigley

Back 2 Black and Gentleman’s Dub Club warmed up the Great Hall with their upbeat sets. After their performance, in an interview with ASM, Gentleman’s Dub Club also revealed their plans for the coming summer. Their Riot Tour is set to play across many locations within the UK. They also stated their return to Wales was scheduled, and they would be performing at two locations; Narberth and Cardiff.

Radio 1 DJ Mistajam performed in the Main Room of the Union, hosted by MTV and Black House. Well known for his 11pm-1am Saturday night slot on Radio 1, Mistajam created an eclectic set, mixing new with classic bass music, sampling electro, deep house, and even Reggae. In his interview with Bay Radio’s Station Manager, Mitch Rushton, he described his experience of Aberystwyth: “Despite the roads on the way here definitely wanting to kill you, I made it in one piece and really enjoyed it. The crowd were very responsive. Small but perfectly formed which was great, I enjoyed it.” He also offered advice to anyone pursuing a similar career to his own: “you need to continue to practice every day, always make sure that you’re justifying your position”.

Attractions could also be found in the area between the Union and the Arts Centre. The Concourse was home to the WonderIce Ice skating rink, as well as several food and drink stalls. Earlier in the evening, the Ball was opened by the University Wind Band.

In the Cwtch, the Alt-Bay and UMCA stage had a variety of local bands perform, including the Welsh language bands Swnami and Y Bandana. The stage also saw a debut performance from Space Cadet, and a rock and roll set from Benign Sun. The night in the Cwtch was ended with Gypsy Wine Cartel, playing their local well-known songs.

This message was displayed on the big screen during the event

This message was displayed on the big screen during the event

Tension was felt in the evening’s processions, as the Art Centre staff took the opportunity to stage further protest over the suspension of Director Alan Hewson and Operational Manager Auriel Martin. The screen that was used for streaming the Great Hall’s stage displayed the message “SHAME ON YOU April McMahon”. Despite the jovial atmosphere, the message provided a reminder of current events and the protests the University faces.

  • Keep your eyes peeled for exclusive interviews with the acts and more in the next few days!