By Natalia Asis, Secretary 

Jon Osborne, Christina Hallowell, Hannah Watson, and Advisor Steven Pane (photo courtesy of Christina Hallowell)

Jon Osborne, Christina Hallowell, Hannah Watson, and Advisor Steven Pane (photo courtesy of Christina Hallowell)

UMF student members from the online arts journal, Knack, are preparing for an upcoming open mic night. The event will take place on Mar. 20 in The Landing.

Open Mic night will be a good opportunity to strengthen the connection between the online journal and the community. “We decided that it’d be cool to take our online presence and give it a physical space for people to come and interact with us and interact with the art on campus,” said Christina Hallowell, an arts administration major and the head of marketing for Knack.

The public will be able to see some performances and enjoy some “knack snacks”. “The event will be relaxing and fun,” said Hannah Watson, the head of web design for Knack. “I know we have some music acts lined up. Expect an easy place to come and hang out and enjoy the acts,” said Watson.

This will not solely be a music event; participants may perform other kind of acts. “If someone wants to go up and read poetry or a monologue, they should feel free to go up and do that,” said Watson.

The online art journal, Knack, was designed by UMF students to help local Western Maine art reach out to a larger audience. “We wanted to create a space online where the community could really showcase all types of arts: sound, video, writing, visual arts, basically everything,” said Watson. This multimedia space was originally developed in Prof. Steven Pane’s class Project 2, but after the semester was finished, some members (Hallowell, Watson, and Jon Osborne, head of the content editing for Knack) decided to continue working on it.

In the journal, a variety of pieces can be found. “We have a calendar that is comprehensive to the area,” said Watson. “Arts Institute of Western Maine and Skye Theatre have given us permission to showcase what they are doing as well so people can explore.”

Knack expects to welcome new members in the near future. “We are trying to find people who are as passionate about what we do as we are,” said Hallowell.

“We have announcements lined up for April to start searching for people to learn what’s going on and to join the official Knack core team,” said Watson.

Knack members expect the upcoming event to be as successful as their relaunch event, which took place last November. “It was a great place for everybody to gather around,” said Hallowell. “It was good to see that people are responding to what we do and this is just really fun.”

The relaunch of Knack last semester was reassuring. Following the performances, there was some mingling time and that is when Hallowell spoke with a UMF alumni who currently works in the Arts. “She came up to me and said how she thought it was really cool what we were doing and that it was something that had been missing in Western Maine and I thought that was really encouraging,” said Hallowell.

“We need performers,” said Hallowell in a Facebook video. “If you like to sing, or tell jokes or read poetry, you should come hang out with us.” Performers can sign up by e-mailing Knack at knackartsjournal@gmail.com