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Arts & Entertainment

Spring Sing: Looking Back at Alanis Morissette’s Acceptance Speech

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As the winter quarter winds down, students are beginning to look forward to what spring has to offer. This includes one of UCLA’s most popular events of the year, Spring Sing, which just released its lineup Friday.

Spring Sing is an event that not only allows students to showcase their artistic talents in front of their peers, but also to potentially expose themselves to recording companies or other higher powers. However, another perk to attending the show is the opportunity to be in the presence of a few celebrities. Last year’s show, for example, had special appearances by both Raven Symoné and Alanis Morissette. Don’t get me wrong, Raven was fantastic, but who could forget that awe-inspiring speech made by the unofficial queen of 90′s alternative rock?

In honor of the release of the lineup for Spring Sing 2015, Mojo takes a look back at an acceptance speech to remember.

Morissette was honored with the George and Ira Gershwin Award for Lifetime Musical Achievement during Spring Sing last year, prompting her to make a lengthy speech about the importance of, well, we’re still not quite sure.



She started off strong, first giving a few shout-outs to UCLA.

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Then she continued on, explaining her love for the arts: “The ego, the storytelling …”

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Next she took a moment to list all of the various types of intelligence …



And finally, she gave us a few last thank-you’s, wished us well on our journeys, and reminded us that …



Thanks, Alanis. We love you too.

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Watch the full video below:

You can find the Spring Sing 2015 lineup here.


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Arts & Entertainment

Life Lessons Learned from the Oscars

Source: AMPAS
Source: AMPAS

Last night was the broadcast of the 87th Academy Awards, AKA the most prestigious cinematic awards show of the year. Besides the usual random knowledge of who is everyone’s plus-one and who made each person’s outfit, I actually picked up a couple life lessons applicable to the life of an average UCLA student. Who says you can’t actually learn anything from watching television?

1. Laugh, even when no one else is doing it

Laughter is like instant social lubricant; it can diffuse any awkward situation, even when that situation is a terribly told pun to a room of Hollywood’s most famous. In attempt to creatively introduce the next presenter, Reese Witherspoon, the host of the show, Neil Patrick Harris, said, “This next presenter is so lovely you could eat her up with her spoon.” *crickets* However, who could stay mad long when he flashes that gorgeous smile? His terrible joke managed to remind everyone to take themselves a little less seriously, something we all need to be reminded of from time to time. If all else fails, pull a Neil and just stick by your work, even if no one else is willing to do so.



2. Call your parents

Let’s get a little sappy for a moment. It is easy in the hustle and bustle of exams, extracurriculars and napping, to forget about those people who just happened to take care of us for 18 years. Thanks to J.K. Simmons, Best Supporting Actor winner, the millions of people watching the broadcast were reminded to call up their biggest fans, their parents. This particular fandom may be small, and it may lack a catchy nickname, like Lovatics or Beliebers, but it is the most important one of all. Pro tip: follow Mr. Simmons’ advice closely and avoid texting a quick, “Hey, what’s up?” Using your phone for its actual intended purpose could be nice for a change.

3. Everything truly is awesome

College students are notorious for complaining about everything. Walking around campus is essentially a full-time job at UCLA, the curve can be a real challenge and the lines are actually ridiculous. However, the adorable and nostalgia-filled spectacle that was performance of The Lego Movie’s “Everything Is Awesome” helped put these daily annoyances into perspective. All that walking gives us super-toned calves, the long lines lead to delicious food and we are incredibly lucky to go to a school as highly academically renowned as UCLA. Plus, if dancers can jump around in cheesy, uncomfortable costumes on national television, then I can totally walk up a few stairs.

4. Don’t be afraid to voice your beliefs

Several stars used the worldwide exposure to promote something other than their favorite gown designer. Reese Witherspoon took to Instagram before the event to promote #AskHerMore, a movement centered around expanding the types of questions asked on the red carpet to female celebs. Steve Carell sported some #HeforShe cuff links, in support of the UN’s campaign for gender equality. Patricia Arquette called for America to step up its protection of equal rights for women in her Best Supporting Actress acceptance speech.

You don’t have to be a powerful movie star to support an awesome cause, there are plenty of outlets on campus to get involved and make a difference. Who knows, you too could earn a celebratory hand point from the queen of cinema, Meryl Streep.

Yes Meryl, yes.

Did you watch the Oscars last night? Tell us what you thought in the comments below or tweet us at @dbmojo!

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Snapchat Stories: Conquering the Death Stairs of 1919

UCLA is filled with stairs all over campus. But the steps that are dreaded the most are the infamous “1919 stairs,” also known as the death stairs. These four tiers of steps lead to a heavenly cup of warm cafe latte with a delicious lemon poppyseed scone, a perfect balance of hot and cold in the Monte Bianco or a stomach-filling cheesy pizza. But when the food coma is in full effect, the stairs come back to haunt you. Those in Hedrick, Rieber and Hitch completely understand the pain and struggle.

So here’s a little story of the constant battle with the stairs that we go through every day.

1. First you’re going to look up at and mentally decide that you’re going to power through.


2. You run up by stretching your legs across as many steps as you can, thinking that it will make the journey quicker and less strenuous.


3. Then you realize that the people in front of you are being so slow.


4. So you debate whether you should go around to the other side.


5. Once you cut the person off you think you’re going to mob up these stairs again. But then you realize that the third tier of stairs are WAY steeper and you have to take a breather.


6. Now you’re at the top and you feel the cool breeze, but you’re still sweating and out of breath.


Congrats! Just a couple more steps until you’re at the doors ready to go in the room and rest.

7. Oops, you left your Bruin Card at your table. Back down the stairs you go. Good luck coming back up.



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Arts & Entertainment

Let’s Talk Coachella: Tip No. 2 Music

photo credit to the Daily Bruin Photo Archive

aaand we’re back!

A few weeks ago, Mojo decided to start a little Coachella series where we gather tips from your peers about various topics before the annual festival, which begins on April 10. Since we got the pressing issue of housing out of the way, this week we’re here to talk about music. What? Shocking, I know – but really.

You need to start preparing your music.

In order to maximize your time at Coachella (time is not your friend there), it’s crucial to go into the festival knowing whom you want to see. With over a hundred bands and artists performing, it’s recommended to start discovering soon to truly get a bang for your buck. Jenna Depillo, a second-year business economics student, said that every year she prepares for Coachella by creating a “giant playlist on SoundCloud,” which includes songs from her favorite artists that she hasn’t heard yet and songs from smaller artists on the lineup. She said that “deciding which sets to go to was the hardest thing to do and streamlining it (with SoundCloud) helped a lot.”

SoundCloud is a great medium to aggregate songs into your official Coachella playlist, especially if you’re a fan of remixes. Many artists such as Madeon, Odesza and Porter Robinson release unofficial remixes on SoundCloud that usually cannot be found on iTunes or Spotify. Tara Afshar, a first-year linguistics and computer science student agrees and says that since she really likes the smaller bands that play, “SoundCloud is usually how (she’ll) listen and create playlists.” Her favorite artists, all on SoundCloud, include Sylvan Esso, St. Lucia, Kaskade and Kygo.

However, iTunes, Spotify and 8tracks can do what SoundCloud can’t: recommend artists and songs directly based on what you’ve been listening to recently.

Jason Lee, a third-year neuroscience student, says, “Spotify allows (him) to browse at pre-made Coachella 2015 playlists and combine multiple playlists into one. (He’ll) listen to the playlist and delete the songs (he doesn’t) like each day to shrink down the number of artists.”  He also advises to use 8tracks when discovering artists. “8tracks is easy because you can click on one of the thousands of ‘Coachella 2015′ playlists and just randomly skip through each one. 8tracks will link you to a whole different world of similar tracks.” When asked about iTunes, he said, “everyone knows about iTunes, it’s a classic.”

For those who don’t have the patience to sit through playlist after playlist, go on Spotify or iTunes and look up each artist to find his or her most famous songs. Still too much effort? Don’t sweat it; Spotify tracks the most-listened tracks under a single tab so all you have to do is add them to your list. There’s also a “related artists” tab, so if you recognize an artist performing, you can simply add his or her top five songs to listen to later. Although this won’t suffice for those album-appreciative type of people, this technique will help conquer more ground in a shorter time.

But for those who make time like Colette Troughton, a first-year biology student, extreme measures are taken to capitalize on the annual experience by truly preparing. “I’ll mitigate my social outgoings and spend more time in my room learning lyrics, creating new dance moves and calculating exactly when the bass drops so I know I’ll be ready for it when the DJs are throwing it down in the Sahara tent,” she said. Mojo asked her what artists she’s looking forward to seeing the most and she emphasized “AC/DC and Steely Dan – in my past life I thrived as a middle-aged man who loved rock ‘n’ roll.”

To make things a tad bit easier, Mojo has created a small playlist to get you started. Jenna, Jason, Colette, Tara and Mojo’s favorite songs are added to the playlist below, so make sure to check it out!

It all begins in T-7 weeks, but who’s counting?

photo credits to Daily Bruin photo archive

Certainly not these kids.

Comment below or tweet us at @dbmojo to offer some music suggestions!

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Experiencing Chinese New Year: UCLA and Beyond

As you might already know, Chinese New Year, otherwise known as the Lunar New Year, is on Thursday, Feb. 19. The holiday is an opportunity to usher in prosperity, good fortune, good health and happiness with the coming new year. For those of you who want to ring in the “Year of the Ram” with friends, there are a few places to celebrate, both on campus and in the greater Los Angeles area. From traditional food to firecrackers – and everything in between – here are a few events to check out within the next week.

On Campus:

Feast at Rieber: Lunar New Year Celebration

What: Feast is planning a themed menu especially for this holiday. Enjoy traditional Chinese cuisine with special features including an appearance by ACA’s Chinese Lion Dance troupe.

When: Feb. 19, in the evening


Chinese New Year Paintings at the UCLA East Asian Library

What: Come see a selection of 22 Chinese New Year paintings on display for a limited time only that have been donated by the Shanghai Library, a partner of the UCLA Library.

When: Feb. 4 at 8 a.m. to March 4 at 11 p.m.


In Los Angeles:

Golden Dragon Parade and Chinese New Year Festival

What: Come on down for the 115th annual Chinese New Year parade and festival in downtown Chinatown that includes entertainment such as kung fu exhibitions, food trucks, pingpong, traditional Chinese paper folding, face painting and more. This event is free and open to all!

Where: Chinatown

When: Feb. 21 at 1 p.m.


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