Show Must Go On: Virtual Sammypalooza Concerts Begin Homecoming Week

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Sammypalooza, the annual concert at Sam Houston State University, has featured some of the hottest artists and bands in America such as Gunna, Daya and the Eli Young Band. It was originally scheduled for March 25. However, due to the widespread outbreak of COVID-19 Student Activities decided to postpone it until Fall 2020. Now, many students are eager to know what Sammypalooza will look like and if it’s still happening.

Sammypalooza this year will include T-Pain, Cheat Codes and Bryce Vine. However, this year, the show will go on differently than in the past.

Assistant Director of Student Activities Steven Begnaud said Sammypalooza will be hosted on an application called “Looped Live” where artists can perform and engage with students online.

“Essentially, [students] would pre-register and then they would be able to view it from their phone, tablet, computer, anywhere they can get that connection virtually,” Begnaud said.

He mentioned that registering for the event prior to the day of the concert is mandatory, as it helps Student Activities track viewership and make sure its exclusive to SHSU students as part of their tuition and fees. Students who do not pre-register will not have access to the concert.

Usually, Sammypalooza would be a one-day concert consisting of two opening acts and a headliner. However, this year, Student Activities is splitting the three acts into their own separate days.

“They’re not going to be back-to-back dates,” Begnaud said. “T-Pain is October 19th, Cheat Codes is November 10th and Bryce Vine is December 2nd. Those two are still in the works as they are a little bit further out.”

While this year’s Sammypalooza will look different in structure and format, Begnaud said it’s unique in that students can directly engage with the artists.

“This one’s cool because there’s a Q and A interaction part of this that you would not normally get in a typical concert setting,” Begnaud said.

While planning an event like this has come with its fair share of challenges and difficulties, Begnaud said Student Activities has worked diligently to ensure Sammypalooza is a success.  

“We’re doing the best we can with what we have, given our circumstances,” Begnaud said. “I think that this will be a really cool opportunity for the institution and the students and the artists to try something like this.”

T-Pain is the first artist scheduled to perform virtually during homecoming week. Students who want to watch the live performance should sign up with their SHSU email through a pre-registration link posted on the Student Activities social media accounts.

For any questions or concerns about the event, students are encouraged to speak to Student Activities in person at the Lowman Student Center or by phone at 936-294-3861.

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