As a school year full of exams, stress and homework comes to a close, La Verne students celebrated with one another at the Fox Theater in Pomona with DJ Screwloose, Rubi Rose and headliner Rico Nasty at Lavernapalooza on May 4.
“I had a great time,” Jeffrey Ammar, senior kinesiology major, said. “Rico Nasty killed it. She is such a great performer.”
The annual end of the year concert, organized and hosted by the Associated Students of University of La Verne and the Campus Activities Board, was announced in the fall semester. A poll was sent out asking students to vote for whom they would want to see perform. Options that did not win included A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, Yung Gravy and Blackbear.
Rico Nasty was announced as the headliner on March 2 through Instagram. Since then, students eagerly awaited the night to see the rap star up close and in person.
Traditional undergraduates were offered free admission, while alumni could buy a ticket for $15. Tickets were also sold to the general public for $30.
CAB hosted a Lavernapalooza Launch Party in Abraham Campus Center on April 13 where students could grab their tickets early, enjoy food and drinks and enter raffles for various prizes like a JBL Clip 4 speaker and a Fujifilm Instax smartphone printer.
As the night of the concert came, shuttles were set up for students to easily ride from ULV to The Fox Theater.
A long line of enthusiastic students formed outside the venue around 7 p.m.
When the doors opened at 7:30 p.m., people flocked to the pit to see the first opener of the night, DJ Screwloose, who amped up the crowd with his mixture of songs, ranging from early 2000s R&B to 2023 rap.
Rubi Rose took the stage next. The rapper got the crowd’s adrenaline rushing and wanting more, performing some of her hit songs like “Big Mouth” and “Wifey.”
Rose had a strong stage performance, dancing to Lil Uzi Vert’s “Just Wanna Rock” and bringing students on the stage to join her.
After Rose finished her set, it was almost time for Rico Nasty.
“When I say Rico, you say Nasty,” her DJ yelled to the crowd, calling her to start her performance and take her place on the stage.
She emerged from the right side of the stage, performing her hit “OHFR?” and wearing a bright pink beanie, a jean jacket and platform Doc Martens with pink laces to match her beanie.
A wave of phones were up in the air, recording and flashing their lights. The crowd was energized and ready for Rico’s performance.
“I didn’t really know much about Rico Nasty, but I listened to one of her albums this morning so I could know some songs,” Ariel Broadus, sophomore psychology and creative writing double major, said. “She did not disappoint at all.”
As the performance went on, the audience got louder and louder, singing along to some of Rico’s biggest songs and features such as “Pressing Me,” “Poppin” and “Tia Tamera.”
“It was amazing,” Ashley Orozco, senior biology major, said. “With this being my senior year, it was a great way to end my last semester.”
Rico ended her set by apologizing to the crowd if her performance was not up to standards, as she had a cough that seemed to be an issue the entire time.
No one in the crowd seemed to notice though, cheering her on and thanking her with supportive yells and words.
Before she exited, she entered the crowd, taking selfies and signing autographs.
“That was my first concert, it was so much fun,” Daniel Delara, junior biology major, said. “I even got a photo with her.”
CAB’s executive board was greatly responsible for the night’s success.
Senior communications major and a CAB co-chair, Yulissa Chavez, said that it was a great feeling to see the months of planning finally come to fruition and that she was happy with the turnout.
“Rico Nasty is our first ever female headliner, and I think that’s really significant to leave behind,” Chavez said. “I think Lavernapalooza is a great tradition and I’m really excited that we were able to have our second show post-COVID.”
As students look towards finals and the future, Lavernapalooza was the perfect way to destress. Rico Nasty rocked The Fox Theater and gave everyone in attendance a night to remember.
Sydney Ferris can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.