Council Approves Concert

$14,150 Budget Narrowly Passes

The Undergraduate Council last night narrowly approved allocating $14,150 to sponsor a Digable Planets concert during reading period this January.

All four council-elected executives--Council President Carey W. Gabay '94, Vice President Melissa Garza '94, Secretary Cynthia D. Johnson '96, and Treasurer Rene Reyes '95--voted against the controversial motion, which passed by a margin of 32-30, with three abstentions.

This move came on the heels of the council allocating $8,000 to subsidize a Penn and Teller comedy-magic concert in Sanders Theatre, also to be held during reading period.

Many council members cited the logistical problems of coercing fans to attend the concert and council members to organize the events during a time when papers and impending final exams are plaguing students.

Council members also said student recognition of the music group on campus isn't high enough to sell out Memorial Hall, where the concert will be held.


"I talked to people in my house and overwhelmingly, I'd say more than 95 percent said that they wouldn't go to this concert," said Dunster House representative Mark R. Kozek '95.

But former council Chair Michael P. Beys '94 said that council members have a mandate to lead, not to simply reflect the musical tastes of their constituencies.

"Is Harvard hip enough to gather an audience for Digable Planets?" he asked council members. "No, we're not hip enough to attract an audience of 6,400. We might be hip enough to attract anaudience of 1,000. But that depends on whether ornot the council is hip enough to convince thestudents to go."

Beys encouraged the council to take largerisks, shrugging off the $10,000 De La Soulconcert debacle of two years ago. "Don't worryabout us being embarrassed," Beys said. "Nothingcould be as embarrassing as De La Soul."

If the concert fails, council members arepredicting serious repercussions that would affectthe future of the council itself.

"People are already furious about the U.C.losing money," said council Administrative LiaisonAndrew J. Ehrlich '96. "If this concert flops itcould mean the end of the council as we know it."

Council member Hillary K. Anger '93-94 said shealmost voted to fund the concert merely "toexpedite the inevitable process of theadministration dissolving the council."

"I'm confident that the council will not existby the end of this year," Anger said.

The council veteran chided Beys for hisrhetorical tactic of applying what she termed"peer pressure" to council members in urging themto support the motion.

"It became a question of whether or not theywere cool enough to vote for it," Anger said. "Iguess people voted to say they are cool, but Ihope they're cool enough to accept the blame whenthey lose $14,000."

Garza made a motion for a roll call vote--thefirst of the year--in order to preserve a publicrecord of the proceedings and to "ensureaccountability."