Sunday afternoon with Laura Fuentes

Elena Amesbury

The returning students’ LU homecoming Sept. 17 was punctuated by campus celebration, including a “picnic” at Downer and inflatables and the music of Laura Fuentes in the Buchanan Kiewit Recreation Center.
Originally intended for the library plaza, the event was moved indoors because of a high probability of rain. Though the day turned out to be beautiful, the events remained indoors.
After setting up in the gym and playing for a bit, Laura Fuentes and her band made a trip to Downer to spread the word about their music and the inflatables. They performed briefly in the foyer and then the A and B rooms before returning to the gym.
Sophomore Claire Gannon stated, “I liked how they came to Downer. It helped spice things up there and got people over to the gym.”
After attending the picnic, students trickled into the rec center. In the gym, the hardwood floor was covered for protection and students left their shoes at the door. The games available included mini golf, a giant inflated giraffe for bouncing, an inflatable battle arena complete with foam weapons, and an obstacle course.
The obstacle course was favored, most likely because it gave the sense of competition without the mandatory sweaty headgear of the battle arena. Freshman Stephanie Lawry commented, “The obstacle course was my favorite. I went on it about five times.”
Laura Fuentes and her band returned to the gym after recruiting at Downer. Her music is what she calls “urban ethnic”-she grew up in Santiago, Chile and she enhances her music with Latin American beats and nuances.
Her backup consisted of Pedro Villagra on wind instruments and voice and Orlando Cabrera on percussion. Fuentes says that her songs “tend to be intimate, filled with boroughs and beaches.”
“It has a very subtle beat,” commented sophomore Hannah Jastram. “It is so clean, you unconsciously start swaying and moving.” Freshman Ken Weinlander also stated, “The music is very good; they are very accomplished.”
Had the music been outside there most likely would have been an even larger audience, but even so, those who came just for the inflatables were pleasantly surprised.