Sanger expresses national security, foreign policy concerns

Three-time Pulitzer Prize winner David E. Sanger expressed concerns about national security, foreign policy and the presidency during a lecture hosted by the University of Tennessee Campus Events Board’s Issues Committee in Alumni Memorial Building Thursday, Jan. 25.

Sanger, a veteran correspondent for The New York Times, divided his lecture into three topics: Trump’s rhetoric and foreign policy, North Korea and cyber security.

Sanger discussed issues surrounding President Trump’s controversial rhetoric. He noted the president’s resistance to respond to foreign policy questions with an example from an early interview.

Sanger questioned foreign policy in the American nuclear umbrella asking, “will you pull American troops out of the Pacific?” Trump ignored Sanger’s question twice during the interview. Finally, the president answered Sanger’s third attempt saying, “they can do what they want.”

Sanger likened Trump’s campaign to Charles Lindbergh’s 1940 “America First” campaign. Trump responded, “America First….I like the sound of that.”

Trump’s response troubled Sanger because global perspective is increasingly important, especially given recent threats from North Korea.

Issues Committee member Avery Arons said, “My biggest takeaway from Sanger’s lecture was his point on North Korea. Our issues with North Korea are a clear problem, and they could be coming to a head very soon.”

Sanger said Trump faces one of the most unlucky presidential positions since the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. For the past 25 years, sitting presidents have given little attention to North Korea’s Nuclear Missile program. North Korea did not successfully launch a missile until 2017.

Now, North Korea possesses nuclear weapons capable of destruction. Trump remains skeptical of North Korea using a nuclear missile on an American city, but Trump must decide to what degree he will attempt to prevent a nuclear strike.

Sanger said Trump has two options: speak with North Korea and contain their nuclear capabilities or take military action. Sanger also said if talks with North Korea are to happen, Trump needs to avoid Twitter. Trump has tweeted about the North Korean crisis, and such tweets have only created bigger barriers between the United States and North Korea.

Sanger finished his lecture with cyber security analysis. U.S. intelligence tied Russian hackers to the Democratic National Convention and 2016 election. Sanger compared the incidents to the Watergate scandal. Then, Sanger discussed potential impacts on democracy and other global threats from cyber-attacks. He listed examples of cyber hacking and manipulation in companies and foreign powers.

For example, Sanger mentioned the 2014 Sony Pictures hack. North Korea sponsored a hacker group to destroy Sony’s internet servers after the film company released “The Interview,” a comedy poking fun at North Korea.

“I think Sanger’s discussion on cyber-attacks was incredibly interesting, and I was happy that he gave a realistic portrait of what the rest of the world thinks of President Trump’s foreign policies,” Issues Committee Chairman Dylan Douglas said.

In addition to his national security reporting, Sanger authored two best-sellers: “Confront and Conceal” and “The Inheritance.”

Featured Image from TNJN

Edited by Lexie Little and Taylor Owens

UT students shadow, perform ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’

Friday, Oct. 27 the Campus Events Board held its annual “Rocky Horror Picture Show” event in the HPER building showing the movie with a live shadow cast performance at midnight.

The event featured “The Virgin Games” for students who had never attended a live showing an hour before the 1975 film began. The audience learned how to participate with the film and live cast as they learned call backs to dialogue and dance moves.

As an annual event for the university, UTK students of all years, majors and levels of experience audition to be members of the shadow cast who perform alongside the film and interact with the audience.

“We did auditions back in September, and it was a two-day audition. I just went for it. About a day or two later I got the call saying that I was in,” Jared Sanchez said.

Sanchez, a junior who performed as a Transylvanian, said, “It has been amazing. We have worked really hard to try to put together a great show for the students here at UT.”

As cast members and “Rocky Horror” fans, the student actors explained the show to the audience.

First time cast member Andrew Gilreath described the film as “a cult-classic, 1970’s movie that makes fun of the horror movies from the old days. It is kind of a rock-opera musical, and it is very sensual. The show is the audience and the performers acting as one to have a really enjoyable time.”

The actors claimed their experiences in the shadow cast were memorable and enjoyable.

Senior and MC/Director Zach Ash has been a cast member every year he has been at UT.

“It has been fantastic. This is the main opportunity I have the entire academic year to fully release all the stress in a way that benefits the school,” Ash said. “It has become very near and dear to my heart, and I look forward to it every year. It feels like something is missing when it is over.”

“The Rocky Horror Picture Show” event continues to be fun for audiences and the cast. The show is set to continue in the future.

Check out the UTK Campus Events Board social media for more upcoming student events: @UTKCEB

Featured Image: Ainsley Kelso

Edited by Lexie Little

Volapalooza brings end of year celebration for UT students, celebrates 15th anniversary

Volapalooza ended the semester with a bang for UT students.

Since 2003, Volapalooza has taken place on the last day of classes and has featured musical acts from every genre. This year’s lineup featured X Ambassadors, COIN, Pell, Luke Pell, Mountains Like Wax, Electric Darling and DJ A-Wall.

The event was moved from Worlds Fair Park to Thompson-Boiling Arena due to inclement weather; a move that upset some students.

Allie Barnes, a UT student, remarked on the move.

“I understand that they had to move it here because of the weather, but I still wish we could have been outside,” she said.

Many students, however, were happy with the move saying they enjoyed the “concert environment more than the festival vibe.”

The show featured two stages, one for local bands and the other for bigger acts. Concert goers could go back and forth between the two stages in between acts. The event also featured many different vendors giving away free items like Coca-Cola, water, t-shirts and free henna tattoos.

The free henna was the most popular booth of the night with some students waiting almost three hours. Volapalooza also featured many different food trucks with items like corndogs, ice cream, burgers, fries and many other options.

Hunter Malone, a student who attends Berea College in Berea, Kentucky, drove in for Volapalooza. He said he made the drive because of the personal connection he has with X Ambassadors.

“X Ambassadors have really helped me through many difficult times in my life. Some of their songs got me through some very dark times when I was battling depression,” Malone said. “They’re part of the reason I am alive and seeing them live reminded me of where I am now, loving myself for who I am.”

Volapalooza proves that there is much more to music than meets the eye.

Images by Gabrielle Harman

Edited by Kaitlin Flippo

Opinion: “Chicago” razzle dazzles at the Tennessee Theatre

On Sunday, Feb. 19, “Razzle Dazzle” was more than just a song as the cast of “Chicago” took the stage at the Tennessee Theatre. “Chicago,” the longest running Broadway production in history, takes place in the 1920s and centers around the murderous women of the Cook Country Jail. Filled with scandal, murder, greed, corruption and so much more, the Broadway touring cast proved that “Chicago” will never get old.

As patrons poured into the Tennessee Theatre, the stage was simply set with a chair and a hat. The lights lowered in the sold-out theatre and the curtain rose to reveal the orchestra positioned on the stage. The orchestra was in a tiered structure on the stage. This served as the background throughout the production instead of changing set backgrounds. While the set remained the same, the lighting helped give dimension to the stage.

The cast consisted of about 20 different members. This all-star cast has plenty of impressive credits. Lana Gordon, who plays Velma Kelly, is a Broadway regular performing in shows such as “Jesus Christ Superstar” and the original production of “The Lion King.” This seasoned veteran’s talent took center stage for many numbers, but stole the show during “I Can’t Do It Alone.”

Dylis Croman played the other leading lady of the night, Roxie Hart. Croman most recently played Roxie Hart on Broadway in New York City. Croman captured Roxie’s spunk and spirit. Other standout performances came from Paul Vogt, who played Amos Hart, and Roz Ryan, who played Matron “Mama” Morton.

This talented cast featured a complete line-up of triple threats. Every performer was not only extremely vocally talented, but all displayed immense athletic ability throughout the many lifts and splits of the show.

With classic hits like “All That Jazz,” “Cell Block Tango” and “Roxie,” “Chicago” is sure to remain on top for years to come.

For more information on “Chicago” or for tickets to the show check out their website.

Featured image by Tennessee Theatre

Edited by Katy Hill

Vol Night Long features glow in the dark rave, Volapalooza lineup revealed

The Campus Events Board hosted its second Vol Night Long this semester, “Glow Up,” on Friday, Feb. 17.

The event showcased a rave with a live DJ, free glow sticks, bracelets and free food.

Apart from recent club hits, such as “Bad and Boujee” by Migos, the DJ played a few throwbacks including, “I Want to be Your Lady Baby” by INOJ and Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off.” With a decent sized crowd and upbeat set list, the attendees seemed to enjoy their night.

There were many things to do while waiting for the Volapalooza lineup announcement such as a photo booth, ping-pong and a back-light game.

Volapalooza is one of the largest campus directed events that invites many artists to perform on the last day of spring semester classes at Worlds Fair Park. In previous years, headliners included Portugal. The Man, Lupe Fiasco and Passion Pit.

Many attendees looked forward to the announcement of Volapalooza and voiced concerns of who they think should be playing.

“I feel like we should have some more local bands at Volapalooza,” Perry Baines, an attendee, said.

However, there were others who disagreed and wanted more mainstream headliners. One of those attendees was Malik Furman.

“I want to see Change the Rapper and Young Thug to make an appearance on the headline,” Furman said.

At 11 p.m., the event organizers announced the lineup. It includes: X Ambassadors, Coin, Pell, DJ A-Wall, Mountains Like Wax and Electric Darling, with more announcements coming soon.

Edited by Kaitlin Flippo

Featured Image by Adrian Godboldt


Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors play for a packed audience at Market Square

With hundreds of audience members in attendance, Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors received a big welcome home on Saturday, Nov. 5. Fellow Knoxville natives, Cereus Bright, joined and opened for the band. The free concert was put on by the Campus Events Board and served as the bookend to the 100th University of Tennessee Homecoming celebration.

Carly Crawford, a University of Tennessee student and concert attendee said, “It’s really cool to not only have this free concert, but to also have UT alums playing.”

Drew Holcomb and his wife, Ellie Holcomb who sang alongside the band, met while attending the University of Tennessee. During the concert, Drew stated that he and Ellie would come to Market Square when they were students to hear live music. He went on to say, “it’s a really surreal experience to be playing at a venue that we would come to so often as students.”

The band played many old songs as well as a couple new tracks. The band put the audience on their feet with songs like “Fire and Dynamite,” “Here We Go,” and “Good Light.” They also appealed to the couples in the audience by playing slow hits such as “American Beauty” and “Hung the Moon.” The band even played two brand new songs, one which they had just recorded the day before.

The hit song of the night, “Tennessee,” was played during the encore and hit home with the audience featuring lyrics “It’s not just geography, it’s a part of me, the air I breathe.”

The bands had to stick strictly to the Market Square sound ordinance leading to the concert ending promptly at 10 p.m.

With so many students and general public in attendance, this concert served a successful ending to the monumental 100th University of Tennessee Homecoming.

You can stay connected with Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors on their website by checking out tour dates, videos, updates and much more.

Featured Image by Gabrielle Harman

Edited by Katy Hill