Lecture to feature ‘Game of Thrones’ writer and actor
Spring Weekend 2019 is upon us. But while warmer weather brings annual University of Connecticut traditions, finals, graduation and the promise of summer, it also brings the new and final season of “Game of Thrones.” It’s no coincidence that SUBOG will be hosting two important members of the “GoT” family, executive producer and writer Bryan Cogman and actress Hannah Murray, who plays Gilly on the show, for the Spring Weekend Lecture on the tails of the eighth season premiere.
“We’ve been working on this since last spring,” Colton Kopcik, SUBOG Comedy Chairperson and eighth semester political science major, said. “The show is coming to an end, and we wanted to take advantage of the hype that’s been building.”
According to Kopcik, SUBOG even had a hand in suggesting “Game of Thrones” as the UConn Reads book selection for 2019.
Jayne Lemire, the SUBOG Films Chairperson and eighth semester political science major, is not an avid watcher of the show but agreed that this “could not be better timing.” Lemire and Kopcik are planning the event together as co-chairs of the lecture this year. Kopcik will also be moderating the discussion.
“Our train of thought was that this is pretty much the biggest pop culture phenomenon of the last 20 years,” Lemire said. “This will be an opportunity for students to see how television works from a different perspective. People have grown up watching this show for the last eight years, now they can see all the work that goes into making a show like this.”
According to Kopcik, this lecture will be different than previous years because of the presence of a writer like Cogman. Cogman is an Emmy award-winning producer and has written over 10 episodes of “Game of Thrones” through its eight-season run. Typically, the lecture is an actor or TV presence. Two years ago, SUBOG hosted actor Evan Peters, and they brought sports television personality Stephen A. Smith to the Storrs campus last year.
“[These two guests] provide a more well-rounded lecture for as many students as possible. It’s going to appeal to different students with different interests, maybe even those interested in getting involved in the television field,” Lemire said.
Booking the lecture was challenging because of the geographical location of so many of the cast and crew of the show as well as external promotional obligations, Kopcik and Lemire said.
“It’s been a challenge, but it was so worth it. Getting to work with HBO has been really unique for us,” Kopcik said.
Tickets to the lecture are available for free any time of day at the Jorgensen box office. You can receive up to two tickets per UConn ID. Tickets can also be picked up at the door. UConn student IDs and Spring Weekend wristbands should be brought to the event for admittance. Doors to the lecture open at 8 p.m. on Friday, and the discussion will start at 9 p.m.
Spring Weekend wristbands are required to attend all Spring Weekend events. They can be picked up at various locations and times throughout the week, as noted on the SUBOG website and social media pages.
“During Spring Weekend, all events are free because they are paid for by student money. By using wristbands we ensure the attendees are UConn students. It seems like a hassle but it’s for the students,” Lemire said of the wristbands.
Other Spring Weekend events to look forward to are OOzeball (“Mudvengers: OOzegame”) on Saturday, April 27 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., the annual food truck festival on Hillside Road and Fairfield Way from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and the comedy show featuring stand-up comedian Chris D’Elia at 10 p.m. on Saturday.
“In talking with my committee, we really wanted a traditional stand-up comedian. It was Chris D’Elia all the way. His Netflix specials are doing really well; his impressions have gone viral. He’s popular with our age group,” Kopcik said. “He’s on a national tour right now, and his Vegas show is almost or completely sold out. So getting him at this time of year is awesome.”
Coming off the heels of UCONNIC, SUBOG has a few key goals for the success of Spring Weekend.
“In terms of the lecture, I hope students learn a little bit more about the show, something unique and interesting. As far as the comedy show goes, just have a laugh. Have a good time. Enjoy yourself,” Kopcik said.
“Spring Weekend in general is a great weekend to kick off finals and graduation. There is a variety of events to attend. It’s an opportunity to just enjoy being at UConn. We are students and plan these events with students in mind,” Lemire said.
“I hope people know we have the best intentions, we try our best to give every student everything they want and provide the best events and experiences possible,” Kopcik said. “[SUBOG] is only responsible for a portion of the weekend. A lot of work goes into planning fun events for students. There’s really something for everybody.”
Julia Mancini is the life editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at Julia.email@example.com.