On Mar. 24, a crowd of students, alumni, and community members congregated in the Lowell Lecture Hall to view the Harvard Undergraduate Drummers’ spring show THUDlash. Leading up to the show, the hall filled with smiling faces, some old, and some young.
Zev J. Nicolai-Scanio ’22, who will be a freshman at Harvard this fall, came to support his friend Sam Markowitz ’21. “I feel like music is definitely going to be part of my Harvard experience once I get here,” Nicolai-Scanio said. “I went to the fall THUD concert and absolutely loved it. It was a great mixture of the things I enjoy about music. The sense of camaraderie, the lightheartedness, but yet the professionalism.”
Suddenly, the lights dimmed, the banter softened, and the audience erupted in applause as directors Adam B. Wrobel ’19 and Dody T. Eid ’20 ran onto the stage. Wrobel laid only one ground rule for the crowd: “If you see something you like, yell.” And with that, Eid and Wrobel introduced the show’s opener, the Harvard Beatboxing Society. The three-man troupe performed a trap rendition of “Elmo’s World,” among other hits. Once the HBS took a bow, THUDlash commenced.
Like previous THUD shows, THUDlash’s plot was quirky and reference-heavy. The show followed the cast of THUD as they attempted to learn the perfect percussion piece from the Percussion Wizard. Along the way, they face hardships such as going to the Quad, losing their percussion buckets, and passing out from consuming the Wizard’s “magic pills” bought from the Market in the Square. But the THUD team overcame these challenges, and with the help of the tough but loving Percussion Wizard a la J.K. Simmons in “Whiplash,” the team was able to play the “Perfect Piece.”
Through the course of the show, THUD accomplished feats like playing percussion with Solo cups on two stacked tables, keeping up a complex drum beat on buckets while the buckets are kicked around to other drummers, and playing the drums on buckets placed on elevated legs.
Saim Raza ’19 thought the show was incredibly multifaceted. “It had everything from dance to singing to—obviously—percussion. It was one of the best performances of any artistic show I’ve seen on campus. It had everything you would want in a show,” Raza said.
The show ended with a tribute to the group’s outgoing seniors. Nathan W. Siegelaub ’18, Cole R. Durbin ’18, Daphne C. Thompson ’18, former Crimson Associate Managing Editor, and Aisha I. Suara ’18 were honored with roses, warm embraces, and enthusiastic applause from the audience. For Suara, Saturday’s performance was a bittersweet moment.
“Honestly I’m really sad it’s over,” Suara said. “THUD has been a great part of my experience. It’s been a great two years. I love everything about THUD, the people, the experience. It’s really just a great time. I think this was our best show.”
—Staff writer Raj Karan S. Gambhir can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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