Lizzo: The Special 2Our

Lizzo singing on stage

Photos taken from Pexels

Are you ready to be loved by Lizzo for Volapalooza? 

On Friday, April 21 UTK will be blessed with Lizzo’s presence for UT’s Volapalooza event. This is a highly anticipated event that was made possible by the Center for Student Engagement (CSE) partnership with Thompson Boling Arena. The concert follows a kickoff event in Circle Park. Information about this free event for students and the public can be found on UTK’s Volapalooza website. 

This is only the second year of the Volapalooza concert itself according to the Associate Director from the CSE Dianna Foulke. Volapalooza was created to “celebrate the end of a successful year” and unwind by listening to a broad genre of music.  Some past performances include Wiz Khalifa, CAKE, Girl Talk and more.  

Not only is Lizzo performing, but there is a special “Party in the Park” at Circle Park on campus. At no cost to students, you can attend this event from 4:00-7:00 PM and experience live music, food trucks and activities. 

There will be two bands you can watch perform with no ticket required. The first is Sun Room, a garage rock band from Southern California. The second band is Solstice, a blues/alternative rock group. This kickoff event is then followed by Lizzo at 8:00 PM in the Thompson Boling Arena. 

The demand for this year’s concert is evident. Student tickets for the Lizzo concert went on sale in November 2022. 

“All of the student tickets sold out within 2 hours. However, there are still general public tickets available via Ticketmaster,”  Foulke said. 

Across campus, students are patiently anticipating Lizzo’s arrival and to hear her message about the connection between women and women’s empowerment. Before we are blessed with her presence on stage, the female artist who won best song of the year in 2022, Latto. 

Aja Jones, a pre-vet student at UTK, shared that she first discovered Lizzo when she released the song “Juice.” 

“I like her music because it is upbeat, positive and very fun to sing and dance to,” Jones said. 

Lizzo’s unique music feels like a party for yourself. Her Special album focuses on self-confidence and women supporting women. In the warm song “Special,” Lizzo tells us that even though you may be broken, “I will always love you the same.” 

Special will also be the album she is performing at Volapalooza. Based on previous performances of this tour, there are at least 10 songs we can expect to hear: 

  • Special
  • About Damn Time
  • 2 Be loved
  • Break up Twice 
  • The Sign 
  • Soulmate 
  • Boys 
  • Good as Hell 
  • Juice
  • Tempo 

So, you even get to experience songs from her first albums as a debut artist. 

In a People magazine interview, Lizzo opens up about her music and being a pioneer in the industry. She explains the prejudice she faces being a “big, black woman” and how she flipped the stereotypical script to make her place in the music industry. 

“I had to blaze a trail. There was no Lizzo before Lizzo,” she said. 

Lizzo sets an example for women to step into their confidence and power. Music is not the only way she accomplishes this. Philanthropy is a priority in her life. 

The artist has her own website that entails her activism. The platform was created after George Floyd’s death to donate to black communities and be an outlet for information. Last year, she added a Planned Parenthood resource in light of Roe v. Wade being reversed. 

For this Special Tour, half a million dollars will be donated to Planned Parenthood, which LiveNation will match to donate one million. It is clear giving back is a priority for Lizzo. 

Lizzo and her powerful voice makes many underrepresented groups feel seen. She is unapologetically herself. You cannot forget her commanding voice and skills with the flute. 

“I say she empowers me by motivating me to be strong and to relish in the beauty I portray as my own individual self…even going as far as to be empowered by the criticism of others, like in her song ‘Rumors,’” Jones said. 

Get ready  to dance the night away this April with Lizzo and feel the love at Rocky Top.