If students are looking for an inexpensive, entertaining evening, somewhere to relax or perform, they should look nofurther than The Venue.

The Venue is a place where students can come and perform whatever they like, whether that is reading a poem, playing the guitar, singing, humorous interpretation or stand-up. All are welcome and original work is highly encouraged.

“This was something I wanted to do because I remember being stuck in a dorm with no money,” said Dr. David Crawford from the Speech and Theatre Department.

Dr. Crawford started The Venue four years ago. It is held in the Jean Browne Theatre located in the Wise Cultural Arts building.

“I did it to give performers a platform to perform,” he said. The atmosphere is relaxed and very supportive.

“It’s the only place that I get to do comedy,” said Daniela Colucci. She performed her original humorous interpretation titled “The Story of Adam and Eve as Told by Grandma Jenkins Part 1.” She not only portrayed Grandma Jenkins but also God, Adam and Eve.

Students do not have to be in the Theatre Program to perform at The Venue. It is for experienced performers and those who really would like a place to be heard.

“I love performing at The Venue because it is a non-judgmental environment in which to perform and that is very, very rare. Other people’s performances inspire me to keep performing,” said Talitha White who performed a duet with her mom.

The Venue is a throw back to the late 1950s and early 1960s where patrons would go to a coffee house to see people perform their original work. As patrons entered a coffee house they were met with the strong smell of cigarettes and coffee.Such greats like Bob Dillon got his start in coffee houses.

The first Venue was held Sept. 6. If any student is interested in performing at The Venue, there are three other dates up for grabs: Sept. 27, Oct. 18 and Nov. 15. The Venue is from 9-11 p.m. and there is also free coffee and snacks.

If students want to sign up to perform they need to contact Dr. Crawford a week in advance at (903) 510-2678.

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