The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Declan McKenna delivers performance of nonstop hits

James Hoeck
Declan McKenna stands on the Bacardi stage speakers during his performance on Friday evening.

Declan McKenna took over the Bacardí stage at 6:30p.m. on Friday to perform 45 minutes of music for a large crowd of fans.

The crowd was jumping from the very first note as McKenna came on stage with his acoustic guitar. 

Fans began dancing and singing along immediately as McKenna opened the set with “Why Do You Feel So Down,” a song from his 2017 album “What Do You Think About the Car?”

McKenna lit up the stage in a white suit, switching from acoustic to electric guitar and back again between songs. 

The British singer kept the energy high, leaping around the stage and never staying in one place. McKenna appeared several times to be on the verge of jumping off the stage, which eventually ended up happening during his last song.

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The last time McKenna played the Chicago music festival was in 2018, the singer said in an interview with the DI before his set. McKenna asked on stage if anyone in the crowd was present the last time he performed at Lollapalooza and received a few whoops in response.

The crowd was incredibly responsive to McKenna throughout the performance, singing loudly to each hit and jumping to the beat. The audience was one of the most interactive at the festival so far, with most fans knowing every word to each of McKenna’s singles.

McKenna performed his newest single “Sympathy,” which he released this past May. He additionally performed tunes from his 2020 album “Zeros” such as “The Key to Life on Earth.”

McKenna is best known for his 2015 debut single “Brazil,” which he performed to a huge reaction from the audience. 

Everyone screamed the lyrics to the hit, which has reached over 400 million streams on Spotify and gone viral on social media app TikTok.

McKenna kept the energy going by going directly into “British Bombs,” which closed out the set.

During the song, McKenna stripped off his suit jacket and finished the performance shirtless. 

After attempting to climb up the side of the stage, McKenna left off stage entirely and ran through the crowd while singing the rest of the song.

Safely back on stage, McKenna bowed goodbye to his fans and left the set a few minutes early after performing all of his most popular hits.

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About the Contributors
Maaike Niekerk
Maaike Niekerk, Arts & Entertainment Editor
My name is Maaike Niekerk, and I am a sophomore majoring in English with minors in music and journalism. I began working with The Daily Illini during the fall semester of my freshman year as a buzz staff writer, and joined the editorial team last summer. I love bringing live event coverage to you from Champaign-Urbana’s vibrant music scene and sharing stories of local artists and musicians. Outside of The Daily Illini, you’ll find me performing at every football game with the Marching Illini or cycling with the 2024 Illini 4000 bike America team.
James Hoeck
James Hoeck, Photo Editor
Heyo! I am James Hoeck, a third-year undergraduate student in photography with a minor in media. I have been a part of Illini Media for two years, starting back in fall 2021. I hold the position of Photo Editor here at The Daily Illini. I also work as Photo Editor for Illini Media’s Illio Yearbook. There is a good chance you will see me out and about on campus taking photos for my personal work or for The DI and/or Illio! If you want to check out more of my work, visit my socials linked below.
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