Less than two days after O.A.R. was announced to headline this year’s highly anticipated Dandelion Day concert, slated for this Friday night, the band cancelled its scheduled performance due to a “family medical emergency,” leaving UR Concerts to book piano rock group Jack’s Mannequin as the replacement in less than 12 hours.
UR Concerts announced that O.A.R. would not perform at approximately 2 a.m. on Wednesday morning on its Facebook page and on sa.rochester.edu/dandelionday — the site Campus Activities Board launched earlier this month to spur excitement for this year’s D-Day in light of the administration’s decision to hold the festivities on Friday, rather than the traditional Saturday.
Though it learned about the cancellation from O.A.R.’s management team early Tuesday morning, UR Concerts did not immediately publicize the news to avoid the inevitable confusion that would ensue on campus, according to Hospitality Manager for UR Concerts and sophomore Emily Ansley.
“We needed to figure out what we were doing before releasing information. Otherwise it would have been really hectic and we would have everyone asking about it and not know what to say,” Ansley said.
Jack’s Mannequin, which was officially announced as the band at 8 p.m. on Wednesday night, is an alternative rock band hailing from Orange County, Calif. and is the side project of frontman Andrew McMahon, originally the frontman of Something Corporate. Jack’s Mannequin is comprised of McMahon, guitarist Bobby Anderson, bassist Mikey Wagner and drummer Jay McMillan.
The group released its debut album, “Everything in Transit” in 2005, which peaked at No. 37 on the Billboard 200. The band’s 2008 follow-up, “The Glass Passenger,” sold 49,000 copies in its first week and peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard 200. Jack’s Mannequin released its latest album, “People and Things,” last October.
SA President and senior Bradley Halpern applauded UR Concerts for rising to the occasion and finding a replacement band on such short notice.
“No one can blame [O.A.R.] for a medical emergency,” Halpern said. “UR Concerts has been extremely proactive and considered many possibilities. It did a great job doing so.”
According to Halpern, UR Concerts immediately contacted other bands when it found out about O.A.R.’s cancellation, beginning with those originally short-listed for the event.UR Concerts co-president and senior Kaitlin Organisciak said that the group collaborated with its agent at concertideas.com and pursued every option. With cost a critical factor in its decision, UR Concerts discussed with the administration the possibility of obtaining more funding to get a band on a similar or higher price level to O.A.R., a move she said the administration agreed to do.
“[Jack’s Mannequin] is in a slightly lower price range, but given the price range that O.A.R. is in, there were no comparable bands that could be booked in the amount of time we had,” Organisciak said.
UR Concerts co-president and senior Caitlyn Behmlander is optimistic about the campus reception of Jack’s Mannequin and urges students to take into consideration the extenuating circumstances.
“We’re hoping that a good amount of people will be excited and that they will enjoy it if they at least give it a shot,” Behmlander said.
Organisciak added that given O.A.R.’s cancellation, “we’re lucky that we’re even going to have a concert.”
“The fact that this is happening is wonderful and I hope it will be well received,” she said. “Obviously we want people to be happy and we’re trying as hard as we can.”
Jack’s Mannequin will play Friday at 8 p.m. on Goergen Athletic Field. There will also be a variety of student performance groups, including three after party DJs. For a complete schedule of events, visit sa.rochester.edu/dandelionday.
Leah Buletti and Jason Silverstein are members of the class of 2013.