Courtesy of Spring Fling Team

Seldom Street and Strictly Platonic will take the Spring Fling stage in advance of renowned artists Swae Lee, Dayglow and Coco & Breezy at this year’s installment of the annual music festival, organizers announced at midnight on Sunday. 

Anticipation had been building since Saturday at 2 p.m. when students convened at the Yale Farm for Battle of the Bands, and voting opened online later that day. Featuring seven student acts, the “battle” showcased a diverse range of musical talent as each group vied for the opportunity to perform at 2024’s Spring Fling.

Engaging with the audience is so so fun,” said Seldom Street’s lead singer Pilar Bylinsky ’25.  “I had an awesome time.”

Thanking the Spring Fling team for organizing the event, Bylinsky expressed her gratitude for the opportunity and the vibrant live audience. During their set, Seldom Street debuted their new song, “i was supposed to die.” While the band originally focused on classic jazz, they have since expanded into melding that sound with pop and R&B. 

The event’s other winner, Strictly Platonic, was formed in 2021 and has been rehearsing in residential college practice rooms and performing at student gigs ever since. They released their last album, which featured seven original songs, in December 2023. This is the band’s second time being voted to play their music at Spring Fling, with their first appearance in 2022.

When preparing for Battle of the Bands, bands are only notified of their acceptance during the week of the event.

Seldom Street practiced almost daily in the week leading up to the event, working to solidify their setlist. Rehearsals were both demanding and rewarding for student acts. 

Zaida Rio ’26, who performed with the band Solstice, said her group’s preparation process was serendipitous given their scheduling conflicts. After finding replacement members to fill in for bandmates who were unable to attend, they perfected their set with only one band practice.

According to Khatumu Tuchscherer ’24 of Khatumu+Okay For Now, her band’s recent performance at Toad’s Place the prior week served as useful practice for their set at Battle of the Bands.

“It was great because they went hand-in-hand and we had a ton of practice beforehand,” she said of their set. 

Tuchscherer’s bandmate Nicolas Upegui ’27 added that one major element of preparing for their set was ensuring they had a harmonious, collective sound as a group. Upegui said that the band plays a range of music given its members’ varied musical backgrounds, and they ultimately chose their setlist based on the songs they most enjoyed playing.

Galvanized by their knowledge of attendees’ genuine love for music, many of the performers shared Upegui’s sentiments, emphasizing the ease with which they were able to choose songs that the audience would enjoy.

“[Choosing a setlist] is about finding the happy medium between songs we like to play and songs we know the audience will love,” Bylinsky said. “And often they’re one and the same!”

Sameer Sultan’24 of Scerface said his band balanced “crowd-pleasing” with the music they were passionate about, emphasizing how Battle of the Bands is uniquely positioned to bring together the musical community at Yale.

Underscoring his thoughts about the unifying power of the event, Rio said that hearing both friends and strangers sing along to her music was particularly surreal.

Rio’s feelings about the value of Battle of the Bands encompassed many of the performers’ feelings about performing at the event. 

“All I’ve ever wanted was for my music to resonate with listeners and help them in the ways it helped me,” she said. “Being able to connect with the audience at Battle of the Bands did just that.”

Spring Fling will take place on April 27.

Kamini Purushothaman covers Arts and New Haven. A first-year student in Trumbull College, she is majoring in History.