FAU students bring on the holiday cheers at the 2013 Y100 Jingle Ball

Alexander Adams

Twerking Christmas trees, glow wands and pyrotechnics lit up the BB&T Center Friday night as FAU students cheered on the 12 acts that made up this year’s sold-out Y100 Jingle Ball concert.

“This year’s concert was so much fun,” said junior communication major Kristen Bosworth. “The show from start to finish was high energy and I just couldn’t stay seated.”

Local radio station Y100 hosted its 13th annual Jingle Ball concert at the BB&T Center located in Sunrise, Fla. with a star-studded lineup that included a myriad of musicians such as Miley Cyrus, Jason Derulo and Fall Out Boy. Paired with a rotating stage and dazzling lighting, all of the acts brought different styles and genres to the stage that gave every music listener something to enjoy.

“I love coming to Jingle Ball every year,” said junior political science major Robert Gordon. “It’s like I’m listening to my iPod on shuffle but better because it’s live.”

The holiday-themed concert started in 2000 and since then there have been over 100 different musical acts that have participated in the event.

Jingle Ball is put on by Clear Channel, the company that owns various radio stations like Y100 and others across the United States, as a sort of preview of what fans can expect from artists who are touring in the upcoming year. Demi Lovato, who opened this year’s show, is one of the many acts that will be headlining their own tours in 2014.

“Demi was my favorite,” Bosworth said. “Seeing her tonight made me even more excited about seeing her show next year. I already have tickets.”

Doors opened at 6:30 p.m. as over 20,000 screaming fans filled the arena, anxiously awaiting the start of the nearly five hour long show.

At 7:30 p.m. the arena’s lights dimmed and the crowd lit up with camera flashes and flashing glow wands that were given away for free by Y100 as they welcomed the opening act – X-Factor judge and former Disney star Demi Lovato.

Flaunting blue hair, tight black leggings and a blazer, Lovato’s opening number “Heart Attack,” a song that reached No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, was greeted with roaring applause that left the singer smiling from ear to ear.

“Thank you guys so much,” Lovato said to the energetic crowd. “Hearing you singing along to my music means everything to me.”

Quickly following Lovato was punk-rock princess and eight-time Grammy nominated artist Avril Lavigne, who opened her set with “Here’s to Never Growing Up,” the lead single from her latest album entitled “Avril Lavigne.”

“Seeing Avril was a dream come true for me,” said sophomore education major Jacqueline Rivera. “The songs she did brought back so many memories and I totally rocked out.”

Finishing her set with the 2002 award-winning ballad “With You,” Lavigne thanked fans and Y100 for allowing her to be a part of this year’s show.

The show organizers wasted no time bringing out the next artist, R&B artist Jason Derulo. Playing a collection of songs, Derulo made fans go crazy with his aggressive dance skills and shirtless body.

“Jason Derulo was sexy and his dancing was unbelievable,” Rivera said. “Seeing Jason’s body was probably the best present I’ll get this year.”

Next on the Christmas set-list was Dutch music producer and DJ, Armin Van Buuren. Van Buuren experienced technical difficulties that caused a little confusion with audience members. During his performance of “This is What it Feels Like,” a song that peaked at No. 12 on the US Dance/Electronic songs chart, the music cut out and there was a blaring feedback noise.

“My friends and I were left awkwardly fist pumping for a few minutes,” said Gordon, who compared the arena to a rave during Van Buuren’s set.

Despite the momentary technical glitch, Van Buuren quickly recovered and continued the show with a spectacular light show that was complemented by smoke cannons, making some fans forget the glitch even happened.

“I forgot that happened. I just… danced a lot and got lost in all the pretty lights,” Bosworth said.

After completing his full set of two songs, Van Buuren thanked fans and Y100 for bringing him on the tour before quickly exiting the stage.

Next to take the stage was platinum recording artist Robin Thicke. Thicke performed a series of four songs that had audience members swaying and chanting as the singer made his way across the stage and even into the crowd at one point.

“Robin was so good. I love his song ‘Blurred Lines’ because it is just one of those songs that put you in a chill mood,” Gordon said.

Thicke finished his set with “Blurred Lines” which was a Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 hit and Rolling Stone Magazine’s choice Song of the Summer 2013.

The next three acts to grace the Jingle Ball stage were pop artists Austin Mahone, Ariana Grande and Fifth Harmony.

Between pop singer Mahone’s acoustic cover of Mario’s “Let Me Love You” and Boca Raton native Grande’s performance of her iTunes No. 1 single “The Way,” fan girls across the arena could not control their excitement for these artists.

“There were girls jumping, crying and hyperventilating when Austin and Ariana were on stage,” said Rivera, who accused her sister of being one of the many young girls who found themselves overjoyed for Grande and Mahone. “I could not believe how worked up some of these girls were.”

Despite the intense response from the audience, Fifth Harmony was one of the low points of the show for Bosworth, who watched the group be born on the X-Factor.

“I thought Fifth Harmony was boring. Hair flips and all,” said Bosworth. “I yawned four times during their set. It was just blah for me.”

The concert showed no signs of slowing down around 10:20 p.m. as Y100 radio hosts welcomed rap artist and Florida native Flo-Rida to the stage.

Performing a series of new and old songs, audience members responded to Flo-Rida’s set with fist pumps, booty pops and jumping. This was Flo’s fourth time returning to the Jingle Ball stage.

The second to last act to hit the stage was punk-rock band Fall Out Boy. Having the most pyrotechnic show at of all of acts, Fall Out Boy had fans head-banging and rocking out throughout their entire set.

“Fall Out Boy was my favorite band when I was in high school,” Rivera said. “Seeing them now was so nostalgic and cool.”

The final and most anticipated act of the night, pop-princess gone bad and former Disney superstar Miley Cyrus finally made her way to the Jingle Ball stage around 11:20 p.m.

Throughout the whole night every act mentioned Cyrus in some fashion. Between sets, television screens played commercials for her upcoming 2014 Bangerz World Tour and the audience members’ screams were louder than ever when she was mentioned. The night belonged to Cyrus and there was no denying it.

“I bought the tickets to see Miley,” said Rivera, who has been a fan of Cyrus since the days of Hannah Montana. “She is so controversial, but at the same time her music is great.”

Cyrus walked onto the stage flaunting her body in a white unitard and huge white fur coat as she sung her Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 hit “Party in the USA”.

“Even if you did not like her you could feel the energy she brought to the stage,” said Gordon, who did not care much to see Cyrus initially. “Her part of the show was undeniably the best part of the night.”

Moving onto more popular songs such as “We Can’t Stop” and “Adore You,” two songs from Cyrus’ latest album entitled “Bangerz,” audience members could not get enough of Cyrus’ set that included twerking Christmas trees and a disheveled man in a Santa Claus outfit holding a beer bottle.

Cyrus finished her set with her longest-running Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 song “Wrecking Ball,” a song that broke the YouTube record for most views within 24 hours.

Cyrus’ thanked the crowd and Y100 for having her on the Jingle Ball tour and strutted across the stage, waving and thanking fans as fireworks, confetti and lasers erupted all around her in a spectacular finale.

From beginning to end, the crowd at the 2013 Y100 Jingle Ball concert was full of energy and enthusiasm. And despite some minor technical difficulties and lackluster performances, for these FAU students, Jingle Ball was a success.

“I’m going to remember tonight for a long time,” Rivera said with a smile as she wiped a speck of glitter confetti off her cheek. “It was unforgettable”.