University of Southern California

Festival of Books 2013

USC Stage – Sunday Performers

Trojan Marching BandThe Trojan Marching Band (musical performance)

Shortly after USC was founded in 1880, a group of musicians first came together to form what would become the Trojan Marching Band (TMB). Now the largest spirit organization on campus, the band has developed into one of the most exciting and innovative collegiate marching bands in the country. Featuring over 300 passionate students from nearly every major at USC, the TMB is a prominent and visible representative of the university with over 350 engagements each year. It has truly earned its nickname “The Spirit of Troy” for its commitment to ‘SC and its tireless support of Trojan athletics.


Dear OneDear ONE (theatrical performance)

Dear ONE, written and directed by Zsa Zsa Gershick, illuminates the lives of ordinary Queer Americans as recounted through letters written between 1953 and 1967, to L.A.’s ONEMagazine, the world’s first openly gay and lesbian periodical. Looking for love, friendship, advice or understanding, readers wrote of loneliness and longing; of joy and fulfillment; and of their daily lives, hidden from history. Adapted from material from the USC ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives. Excerpts of the play will be performed by professional actors Dalila Ali Rajah, Hunter Lee Hughes, Paul Jacek and Beverly Mickins.


Raquel RodriguezRaquel Rodriguez (musical performance—jazz)

Inspired by Etta James, Amy Winehouse, Adele and others, Raquel Rodriguez has distinguished herself as a rising star in the L.A. music scene. In the spring of 2012, Raquel received her B.M., Music Industry degree with a minor in Jazz Studies from the USC Thornton School of Music. Her band has performed at some of the top venues in Southern California, including the Roxy, Key Club and the House of Blues. In 2012, they won the nationwide College Battle of the Bands, and as a result, recorded Raquel’s original song, “Already Beat” with Grammy-winning producer Andrew Scheps.


Aman Alem and Caitlin Notey Aman Alem and Caitlin Notey (musical performance—popular music)

Aman Alem and Caitlin Notey are a songwriting duo based in Los Angeles. The two first met while pursuing degrees in Popular Music at USC. Sharing similar artistic visions, they decided to join forces and in their sophomore year, the pair began writing songs together. Both Caitlin and Aman front projects of their own, but when together, Notey’s folksy, soul-driven style combines with Alem’s alt-rock feel to form a uniquely energetic sound, driven by rich vocal harmonies and expressive lyrics.


USC SirensUSC Sirens (musical performance—a cappella)

USC Sirens is the first and only all female a cappella group at USC, founded in 1997 by Brock Harris. The USC Sirens come together to share their passion for singing with the rest of the world. They believe in empowering each other through song as well as connecting with audiences through performance; they challenge themselves musically and professionally, building their own arrangements and recording their own albums. Their seventh album will debut this spring. They have performed around Los Angeles at venues ranging from Universal City Walk to private parties and on tour in Chicago and Virginia.


ALAJEALAJE (musical performance—Afro Latin jazz)

Directed by Aaron Serfaty, the Afro Latin American Jazz Ensemble (ALAJE) is one of several ensembles housed within the USC Thornton School of Music. The ensemble provides Jazz Studies students with the opportunity to arrange and perform a range of musical selections, from standard classics to original compositions, making ALAJE a launching point for some of the finest musicians of the next generation. They are a favorite at campus events, city-wide cultural events and L.A. area festivals.