SDSU hosts first Talent Open Mic


SUBMITTED Soleil Bashale performed for the Talent Open Mic Night December 2017. Bashale will be one of two featured artists at this year’s Talent Open Mic, which will take place Thursday, April 26 in the Student Union.

Lauren Franken

SDSU students and Brookings community members are invited to performs at Talent Open Mic April 26 in the Student Union.

The African Student Association is teaming up with Our Growth Project to host the event, which both groups hope will give young people an opportunity to showcase their talent on a platform dedicated solely to OGP’s mission: “Discovering greatness in youths through ‘edutainement:’ education, art and entertainment.”

Talent Open Mic is meant to not only to encourage students to perform, but anyone in the community who feels they have a talent worth sharing.

“They’re open to the public as well, so we like to have everybody come to the platform where you can showcase your talent,” Our Growth Project’s founder Wilson Kubwayo said. “But it is educational in the sense that we all learn from each other.”

This is the first time the event will be held in Brookings, and Kubwayo said he is excited to see what local talent SDSU students and Brookings community members have to share.

“The idea of getting together is to embrace our differences and have a good time together while learning from each other,” Kubwayo said. “We recognize that art is an important thing, where people can communicate their message.”

ASA’s president, operation management graduate student David Odeleye, said he hopes to see local talent emerge from the show, some of whom he suspects will go on to “become great performers.”

“[OGP] brings diversity and flavor to campus,” Odeleye said.  “Bringing a touch of an outside community while keeping touch with the student population.”

The first hour of the night will be completely dedicated to student and community member performances and the last half of the night will feature two OGP performers from Sioux Falls.

The featured artists are magician Travis Nye and singer and dancer Soleil Bashale.

Since launching OGP in October 2016, Kubwayo has amassed 15 shows and anticipates crowd sizes growing as Talent Open Mic broadens its range of venues to include Sioux Falls, Vermillion and Brookings.

“Anytime OGP is allowed to showcase what we are about is always exciting,” Nye said. “Especially when it is our first time being invited to a new venue.”

Kubwayo said, on average, around 100 people attend the shows, and Odeleye is optimistic Brookings will become a regular site for OGP’s Talent Open Mic.

“I am 100 percent sure that it will be successful,” Odeleye said. “I look forward to seeing another OGP open mic night in Brookings in the future.”