The Oberlin Review

Students at Solarity last semester dancing while opener Kota the Kid performs.

Behind the Scenes: How Bookers Bring Musicians to Campus

February 14, 2020

A few weeks ago at the 2020 Grammy Awards, pop legend, self-love queen, and all-around icon Lizzo opened the show with her back turned to the audience, arms waving as she conducted the full band in front of her while the celebrity audience cheered. Lizzo won three Grammys in this ceremony. Just over a year earlier, Lizzo headlined Oberlin College’s free rave-style concert, Solarity, in the Heisman Club Field House. This isn’t the only case in which Oberlin has booked musicians just...

“Solarity” Failed Students By Refusing to Provide Condoms

Taylor Andrews, Contributing Writer

December 13, 2019

 This weekend, I was extremely disappointed that I was not allowed to provide condoms at Solarity. As a Sexual Information Center student staffer, I aim to increase access to safer sex supplies for Oberlin’s campus. I have personally done so by filling the condom bins in both Mary Church Terrell Main Library and the Science Center. Additionally, in my role as a Residential Assistant, I make condoms freely available for my residents at my door.  Solarity is one space where the need for safer sex supplies has been overlooked. In general, music events tend to involve riskier behavior with drug usage and sexual practices. Solarity is no exception. If you decide to hook up with the person(s) you are with after a n...

Aerialists perform at last fall’s Solarity Presents: WASTELAND. The event consistently draws large crowds and features both student and visiting artists.

Lizzo, Iglooghost to Make For Memorable “Solarity”

December 7, 2018

Solarity, Oberlin’s take on college rave culture, is returning this semester with an exciting lineup of performers. Tomorrow evening Lizzo, a hip-hop artist who became hugely popular with hit singles such as “Truth Hurts” and “Good As Hell,” will headline the event. Numerous student DJs will open her performance, including 2NDWIFE x hearteyes and CLENDO. And What!?, a student hip-hop dance group, will also be included in the student performances. DJ and British electronic music producer...

Solarity Sunset Event Takes Over Wilder Bowl

Victoria Albacete, Production Manager and Interviews by Jude Fernandes

May 11, 2018

The Science Center Atrium, Heisman Field House, North Quad, Mudd parking lot, the Root Room, Wilder Bowl, Hales Gymnasium. What do all these places have in common? They have all hosted various iterations of Solarity, the closest party Oberlin has to a rave. Originally co-sponsored by Solarity coordinators and the now-defunct Royal Thread Collective, these party-type semesterly events have taken place on Oberlin’s campus since spring 2011, when the first Solarity event, Neon Garden, rocked the Science Center Atrium. As an event-management organization, Solarity was founded in Winter Term 2011 by several students who were “fed up with nightlife at Oberlin.” (“Solarity Seeks to Revitalize Social Scene,” The Oberlin Re...

A “Wasteland” themed Solarity in November 2017. A new campus group, the Oberlin Bystander Initiative, will be sending trained bystanders to parties and campus events where there could be alcohol or other substances to ensure students’ safety.

Oberlin Bystander Intervention Finds New Home

February 16, 2018

The Oberlin Bystander Intervention Program, which aims to train students to be active bystanders at large events as well as educate about substance abuse safety measures, becomes fully operational this semester. Founded in 2016 by College junior Kirsten Mojziszek and senior Deborah Johnson, OBI originally addressed bystander intervention in the cases of sexual misconduct. Mojziszek and Johnson, then Student Senators, formed OBI based on the Senate’s sexual misconduct working group. “I think Kirs...

College seniors (left to right) Abe Post-Hyatt, Kyle Tribble and Gabe Simon perform at Illusion, Solarity’s fall event that took place in Hales Gymnasium. The organization’s spring event, Atlantis, will be held tonight in the Heisman Club Field House.

Solarity’s “Atlantis” Returns to All-Student Roots

May 5, 2017

Solarity has thrown the largest student-run event on campus every semester and will be back tonight in the Heisman Club Field House. This semester’s Atlantis theme will offer a ship-furnished, aquatic feel, and organizers have brought the event back to its student-centered roots with an impressive string of student DJs as well as student music, dance and aerial performances. This semester’s event follows the decision to bring in big-name DJ and musician Metro Boomin for fall’s event, Illus...

Students celebrate last fall’s Solarity event “Toxicity.” The current co- chairs of Solarity said that, although they still want to retain aspects of their “party image,” they are looking to move toward a future of more accessible events

Solarity Aims for Organizational Accessibility

October 10, 2014

In response to a recent increase in membership, the student leaders of Solarity, an organization that strives to unify the student body through large-scale music and dance productions, have made a number of structural and aspirational changes to their organization. Solarity’s co-chairs, College seniors McKenzie Smith and Juliana Ruoff and College junior Ben Lebovic, hope that these changes, which include the division of labor among a larger number of student members, will improve the...

College sophomore Sophie Umazi Mvurya (right) moves to the music at Toxicity last Friday night. The wasteland-themed event, hosted by Solarity, featured student DJs and musicians and culminated in a “Silent Disco.” Attendees were issued wireless headphones through which they could choose from two music channels.

In Spite of Controversy, Massive Crowd Gathers for Toxicity

May 9, 2014

Solarity’s latest event, Toxicity, generated nearly as much energy as a nuclear power plant. Despite the controversy surrounding the event concerning its name, hundreds of students flocked to Wilder Bowl last Friday night to see student artwork and dance the night away. The display seemed a far cry from the advertised “wasteland,” with only a few decorated trashcans conveying the nuclear wasteland theme. With blinking lights hung from the trees and the Solarity members’ glowing costumes,...

Cooling the Babylon Matrix Meditates on Consumption, Entertainment

Taia Kwinter, Staff Writer

May 3, 2013

A busy weekend of Senior Studio shows closed with College senior Lily Gottschalk’s Cooling the Babylon Matrix, a remarkable feat of installation, performance, sculpture and multimedia art. Utilizing many of the facilities in Philips Gym, Gottschalk created a labyrinth of spectacle, consumption and interrogation. The event opened at midnight on Saturday, just as Solarity’s Awaken the Wild event closed for the night. Although this planning was unintentional, the eccentric energy of Solarity’s attendees, as well as the number and level of inebriated students, played well into Gottschalk’s purpose and subject matter. At the entrance to the gym two women stood behind a greeting table, which was neatly arranged with...

Sneak Preview: Awaken the Wild

Abby Hawkins, Arts Editor

April 26, 2013

Could you explain the theme “Awaken the Wild” a little bit more? It’s very nebulous right now. Eli Clark-Davis: We’re going for an “enchanted forest” sort of theme — monsters, fairies, all the craziest creatures you could ever imagine. Evan Baker: Definitely. Animals are a big thing that have been in all of our designs. Our whole design aesthetic has been animal-focused. ... After Origins, we felt that that theme was way too nebulous and no one could connect with it, which was totally our fault for making something that was too heady, so we decided we wanted to bring it to something we felt was more accessible, that people could latch onto when they were dressing up. We always want to get people involv...

Ecolympics Underway, Expands Programming

Adiel Kaplan, Staff Writer

April 19, 2013

The glowing energy orbs around campus have been a little greener over the last two weeks as the Office of Environmental Sustainability kicks off its sixth annual Ecolympics. Ecolympics, which began April 5 and will run through April 26, is Oberlin’s three-week- long dorm energy-reduction competition, accompanied by daily events. This past Monday, a lecture titled “Environmental & LGBTQ Activism and the Bio-diversity of Sexuality” by eco- feminist activist and author Pattrice Jones was co-sponsored by the Drag Ball Committee, marking the first year of any such partnership. But it’s not just Drag Ball: this year Ecolympics is co-sponsoring events in partnership with organizations like Oberlin Shansi and...

Student DJs turned out hot electronic mixes at Fracture.

One Fracture-Goer’s Take on Solarity/RTC’s Most Recent Event

May 4, 2012

Perhaps people did not know what to expect from Solarity and RTC’s collaborative effort, Fracture. There was talk of a post-apocalyptic theme and performers ranging from And What!?, the all-female hip-hop dance collective, to Knomadik, a jazz-electro fusion septet, but no one was expecting the plethora of student talent showcased this past Saturday night — the dance event, held in Heisman Field House, was a sight to behold. The now campus-famous, student-run production organization RTC constructed...

Established 1874.