Students in the School of Media Arts and Studies Music Production/Recording Industry program have organized the Columbus Indi-E-Festival, which will stream live at 6:30 p.m Feb. 20 on YouTube. “The festival was established to foster closeness in the local music scene by giving artists exposure and encouraging people to discover and support new local artists,” said the festival's founder, Arman Lopeman.
Back home for the fall semester, Lopeman, a sophomore in the MPRI program, was inspired to create something bigger than himself. He was already working with a few local bands and others from the DIY music scene when he had the idea to organize an online festival. He spearheaded the project with a team of friends and colleagues in the MPRI program.
Besides being the founder and director, Lopeman is also the head audio engineer for the festival. MPRI sophomore Lauren Allison helps with general management, organization, and behind-the-scenes work. Sophomore Nathan Cain and junior Anne Fink run the social media pages. Another sophomore, Micheal Wells, and seniors Courtney Rosati and R.J. Martin will run live sessions and handle mixing. Nick Allen, who will attend OU next year, is the main cameraman and video editor. “The festival is a good way for students to gain more experience in different areas of the production process,” added Lopeman.
Seven bands will represent the Columbus scene: Angel Cult, Cellar Dwellar, Dairy Family, Four Times Louder, Sparky & the Hills, Strobe Light Casualties and Venice Watching.
All donations the festival receives during the stream will go to the National Independent Venue Association’s (NIVA) #SaveOurStages campaign, which aids venues nationwide in surviving the pandemic. All mastered audio will be given to the bands to release on any streaming platform as a way to bring in revenue as well.
“I'd like to thank Kafe Kerouac in Columbus and Skylark's Toys and Comics in Grove City for hosting some of the sessions,” said Lopeman. “Thank you to the stars of the show, all the artists who played in the festival, and most of all, I want to thank the absolutely incredible group of people with whom I have been lucky enough to have worked on this project with. It could not have happened without all of you.”
For updates on the festival and information on NIVA’s #SaveOurStages campaign, visit their social media pages at https://linktr.ee/cbus_indiefest.