Broadway shows featured on the mega screens in Times Square, Manhattan, NY. USG is organizing discounted Broadway trips during the 2020 spring semester. BROADWAY TOURS/FLICKER VIA CC BY 2.0

During winter break the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) announced a flurry of surprises for returning Stony Brook students, including discounted trips to see hit Broadway plays. With a fee of $50 students get to see shows like the critically acclaimed “Lion King” during the Spring semester.

With the release of the Broadway trips, people speculated that they were to replace Brookfest. Upon hearing this supposed rumor of replacement, chief of staff for USG and political science major Carlos Cobo, was quick to debunk the idea.   

“By no means would Brookfest be replaced with Broadway shows, as Brookfest is not only a major anticipation following spring break, it is a Stony Brook University tradition.”

According to Cobo, the budget the university gives USG is big enough for both the Broadway trips and Brookfest, so the decision to cancel one for the other is completely unnecessary. The chance to see Broadway shows isn’t new to Stony Brook students as last semester USG took students to see Aladdin. 

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The average ticket price to see Aladdin as of Jan. 26 is $108.36. When travel is taken into consideration, the $50 price tag USG is offered doesn’t seem bad at all. Cobo attended the Aladdin trip and revealed that students had the opportunity to tour the New Amsterdam Theater as well. 

“I would absolutely recommend this trip to students,” Cobo said. 

USG’s attempt to provide Stony Brook students with entertainment has succeeded so far. Only one trip has been announced by the organization, “The Lion King” on Feb. 1 on social media, SB Engaged and the Campus Connect emails. Tickets to see “Wicked” have also been advertised but these trips are hosted by Student Activities and Engagement. 

In an email, Treasurer of USG and senior computer engineering major, Adrian Ortega, explains the importance of giving students the chance to see Broadway plays. “We want students to have the opportunity to experience as many things as they could while they are in college. Hopefully, the students who participate will either develop a passion for something new or continue to appreciate what they love to do.”

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It seems that each Broadway trip will be announced as the date draws near. The USG’s official website is barren except for a few names and positions of those who make up the organization. This makes it difficult to find updates about the events they have, but USG seems to utilize their social media pages, especially Instagram, for most of their updates. The Corq app or SB Engaged are two other reliable sources for students to stay up-to-date about any events being held on or off campus by USG.

With the need to satisfy a diverse set of students, the decision to pick which Broadway show can be daunting. “The Broadway shows were decided based on availability of the tickets and dates. There are a lot of events being planned in the spring semester, so we had to make sure that no one week is over-saturated with events. We did our best to target the more popular shows,” Ortega said.

But with musicals like “The Lion King” and “Aladdin” under their belt, USG has yet to disappoint. Tickets to see “The Lion King” are sold out and tickets to see “Wicked” on Feb. 9, hosted by Student Activities and Engagement, are also sold out. 

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