By Johnny Marino Special to The Chronicle
On Friday night, the jocular HaHa Hofstra crew came out with a pleasant and entertaining act. Dan Johnson, the MC for the night, broke the ice with a short and humorous story about his childhood and the women who raised him. Once the crowd was warmed up, Mike Braithwaite entered with a skit about being Jewish. This skit contained jokes about the secret behind Bar Mitzvahs and what happens to every thirteen-year-old Jewish boy on that holy day. Braithwaite did a superb job leading the audience into this laughable night. After a quick introduction and a welcoming by Dan Johnson once again, Ronnie Wurtz the “Hypnotist” came up to the mic.After asking a volunteer to “hypnotize,” Ronnie began yelling hysterically. But he wasn’t simply yelling unintelligibly, he was reciting Ja Rule’s “Hypnotize.” I was laughing so hard that my notes came out as hieroglyphs.
Third up was Tyler Frastins. Tyler based his act on the fact that he was a new comedian. This “anxiety skit” had the audience chuckling and smiling as he explained his fears being on stage and how he imagined black crows picking and biting at him, like they had in his nightmare. He then led into the language of drugs; how things can be misinterpreted when talking about “molly.” Disregarding hard drugs, he explained this “molly girl” wasn’t for him, and (obviously joking) how he was addicted to Viagra: “I like to get that constant boner going.”
Next, Riley Metcalf had quite a memorable skit. What I really liked about Metcalf is how he expected much of his audience; he expected the audience to have a certain intelligence level (knowing that the average Hofstra student is, in fact, a sharp tool in the shed). Drawing comparisons between the past and the present, Metcalf’s historical anecdotes brought attention to first-world problems, historical figures and… well, smells. “There are four good smells: Meat cooking, vanilla, fear and a babies head,” said Metcalf, clearly exemplifying that living in today’s world is much better than living in any other time period.
As a member of the audience, when I heard that Emma Clark had been on the same stage as Jerry Seinfeld and Jim Gaffigan, I was expecting a phenomenal performance, and Clark showed up. You can really tell she was a polished comedian, and by encouraging audience participation, her act was immersive. There was no solid “theme” for her presentation, and she changed topic on the drop of a dime, which added a comical element to her as a character. After her spot on
Billy Crystal impression, she strapped on a six-string and played a lighthearted and goofy tune about Korea. Genuine performance.
Nick McGee started by mentioning that he was a Patriots fan, and that sometimes after they lost, he would get angry and would get a major confidence boost afterwardsHe later discussed how he was auditioning for a role and was denied the role because he was too stereotypical. Overall, a very fluid and original performance.
Lastly, a comedian came to the stage who was comfortable, outgoing, and clearly lived the experiences she portrayed. She played off “women’s time of the month,” and how her dad would get so awkward around the subject. Her comedy was raw and almost “unimaginable” that it had to be real. This final comedian, ladies and gent’s, was Jess Cavington, and after describing her winter break in a very unique way, she wrapped up with smooth and clever finale about a Beyoncé concert she didn’t get to go to.
Overall, HaHa Hofstra blew me away. As a first time attendee, I was amazed at the talent, tactfulness and bearing these people had on comedy. It was a laugh the whole time; I left there with a smile on my face, a great story to write up, and an increased lightheartedness.