Queer folk duos collide: Tegan & Sara & Hannah & Maggie to perform at Smith

Becca Damante ’17
Staff Writer

After a successful sold-out event featuring Emmy-winning actress Viola Davis, Smith’s Student Event Committee (SEC) will host a large concert on April 8 featuring Tegan & Sara. The critically acclaimed indie-pop duo is set to play an hour-long set in the Quad, and Smith alumnae Hannah & Maggie will open the show with a folk acoustic set.
Tegan & Sara recently announced that their next album, “Love You to Death,” will be released on June 3, and the band plans to premiere some of these new songs at Smith. SEC Chair Lena Wilson ’16 said, “They’re lucky we didn’t demand a free concert, considering I’ve probably funded at least 15 of Sara’s weird haircuts through my own merch and CD purchases alone. I think we all know Tegan & Sara and Smith are a match made in sapphic heaven. I can’t wait to stomp my Doc Martens to whatever genius new stuff they’ve got on.”
Tegan & Sara have wanted to return to Northampton ever since they performed at the Calvin Theatre in February 2010. According to Tegan, the show was one of the highlights of their career, as the fans were louder than any other city in the world. At the concert, Tegan joked that Northampton has more lesbians per capita than anywhere else in the country. The crowd roared with applause and a chant of “The L Word” theme song.
Northampton’s penchant for all things lesbian is, of course, part of the reason Tegan & Sara are returning to the Pioneer Valley. Northampton community members and Five-College students will certainly flock to the concert in droves. Sara Quinn is looking to date someone from this area, as she recently broke up with her long-time girlfriend. Perhaps a Smith student will be her next heartthrob? According to her Tinder profile, she is looking for someone with whom she can get “a little bit closer.”
Smithies are particularly excited that Smith alumnae Hannah & Maggie will open the show. Tegan & Sara hand-selected the band from a plethora of nominees sent to them by SEC’s Jittery’s Chair Meredith Shanoski ’16. Tegan & Sara were thrilled with Hannah & Maggie’s queer folk aesthetic. Katie Cooney ’17 agreed and raved on Facebook: “Hannah & Maggie’s queer vibe and outfits set the stage for Tegan & Sara. They might be a little more folk-y than Tegan & Sara, but their energy and stage presence fit perfectly.” Here’s to hoping they will do a mash-up or a duet.
Perhaps the most exciting part of this event is the competition for an intimate serenade at a Smith house’s Spring Weekend. Tegan & Sara recently announced via Twitter that they are searching for the house with the most exquisite musical talent and will play a private intimate set in that house’s living room following their concert performance. Smith house presidents are helping to organize the competition; they plan to film their houses performances and send the unedited clips to SEC, who will forward them along to Tegan & Sara for review.
Many houses have already gathered in preparation, seeking out help from music professors on campus and a Capella groups. Other houses have had their songs chosen for weeks. In fact, it is rumored that ukulele and guitar players from Park House will be performing “Make Out” by Julia Nunes in an effort to woo Tegan & Sara.
Bring all your friends – from gay to straight to everyone in between!

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