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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Student-run business Interlude Music opens in Student Center

Interlude’s mission is to support student musicians and give them a way to reach a larger audience.

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Aqweela Green (left) and Haley Rohrer (right) inventory merchandise Tuesday, Oct. 7, at Interlude Music in the MU Student Center. The business opened on Sept. 29.

Mike Krebs/Senior Staff Photographer

After being delayed more than a month, Interlude Music opened its doors last week. The music store promotes student musicians and sells artists’ merchandise and used instruments.

Founded by senior Megan Monfreda, Interlude is a part of the Missouri Student Unions Entrepreneurial Program, which leases a space in the Student Center each year to a student-run start-up business.

The store was originally scheduled to open Aug. 25 and then again Sept. 8, but due to various legal issues, the date was set back a second time.

“The department we sent our paperwork through said they were five weeks behind, and then once that went through, we didn’t want to open until the majority of our musicians had been signed,” Monfreda said.

Regardless of adversities, Interlude had a big turnout for opening day, showcasing artists and introducing customers to the new business on campus.

Monfreda said she decided to pursue Interlude when she was thinking about potential new student start-up businesses with a friend.

“I’m a big, big fan of music, so I thought about what I could do for it,” she said. “I started bouncing ideas off of one of my friends, and through a long process of meetings and charts, we came up with Interlude Music.”

The presentation to the entrepreneurship program consisted of quite a bit of work on the team members’ parts, according to social media strategist Lauren Garvey.

“There’s a new business in the Student Center every year, and we had to make a big conference call to the people heading the program to try to pass ours through, along with a lot of other work,” she said.

After the proposal was accepted, an array of team members had to be hired to help with various tasks, including music analysts, social media strategists, music managers and business advisers.

Interlude operates as a business but will also be working like a recording label. It is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fridays.

“(Interlude) has what other businesses didn’t necessarily have,” Monfreda said. “For example, Quirks, last year’s student start-up business, was very successful, but it seemed to target a specific area, whereas Interlude isn’t like that. It has something for just about anyone. I haven’t met one person who doesn’t like music, and we’ll have all different kinds.”

Monfreda said the wide array of music will enhance Interlude’s quality as a store.

Music managers, such as senior Chantel George, are in charge of overseeing the artists and recruiting all different kind of talent, from rap and hip-hop to folk singers.

Because of the time and effort exerted by the musicians, Interlude is aiming to help the artists benefit financially from their experience.

“Our goal is for the artist to expose their talents and provide them with opportunities to possibly make a profit from their music," George said. “We’re still working on the logistics in hopes they will get a profit.”

Beginning this semester, the business will be hosting shows at different venues on campus, in Columbia and potentially in other cities.

“We will be having a Fall Fest this semester and another main event in the spring, along with a couple different events every month,” Monfreda said.

Monfreda said Interlude’s mission is to support student musicians and give them a way to reach a larger audience.

“Our goal is to scout talent at Mizzou and find talent that might otherwise go unnoticed,” Garvey said. “We want to help shape musicians into who they have the potential to be, help them showcase their talents and promote them to a wider audience.”

George said she sees bigger opportunities for musicians through this business.

“We’re hoping this company will bring new ideas and a fresh perspective to Mizzou,” she said. “Long-term, we aim to expand musical talent at Mizzou and hope that students get recognized and exposed to bigger companies, such as Warner Brothers.”

Even though Interlude Music is brand-new, Garvey said she believes that students will still able to be successful.

“We’re always looking for new musicians,” she said. “I just hope that through this business, students are able to further their dreams.”

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