Carnicus, a UT tradition dating back more than 100 years, will return to campus tonight and Friday with its annual group skit competition.
What was once a celebration entitled June Jubilee, Carnicus originally consisted of a carnival with performances by the campus Glee Club, as well as side and vaudeville shows. Over the span of a few years, a circus was added to the June Jubilee which included students dressing up as animals for fun.
The carnival and circus were eventually combined in 1929 by UT's All Campus Events Committee, and UT alum George Abernathy, a member of the All Students' Club, coined the word "Carnicus."
Carnicus is a yearly performance for organizations and groups on campus to perform a comedic skit, usually lasting no more than 15 minutes, that is based off of events happening on campus or in the world. Each group then picks a movie or TV show to base their theme off of and attempts to incorporate it with their UT lifestyle.
Stephen Martin, senior in civil engineering, is currently the Carnicus chair for ACE.
"I would definitely recommend Carnicus to a friend," Martin said. "It brings a tradition unlike any other. Groups usually come together and pair up, and it brings the campus together for a night of fun."
While planning Carnicus, Martin said ACE began organizing in August but didn't really get the ball running until around January. Usually, he said, planning for Carnicus starts about a year in advance.
There are some details, he noted, such as venue booking, that have to be done in advance.
"I am looking forward the most to each group finally performing," Martin said. "I know everyone has put in a lot of work and it's finally time."
Martin said this will be his third, and unfortunately last, Carnicus as a UT student.
Scott White, senior in supply chain management, is the director's chair of ACE and helps plan and implement all of its events, including Carnicus.
White said students attending can expect to experience one of UT's long-standing traditions by watching participants act out skits that reference current events relevant to the university.
"In its earliest form, it brought entertainment to students in the form of a carnival and side shows," White said, "and now it brings entertainment by having organizations perform skits to the the audience."
White said Carnicus is an important tradition on campus.
"Carnicus allows alumni to come and experience an event they may have participated in when they were in school," White said, "and it provides current students an opportunity to be a part of the event that has been around for a long time."
For more information on Carnicus, contact UT Students Activities. Tickets are currently $10 for students with a student ID and $15 for the general public. The event will be held today and Friday beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Cox Auditorium.