Students joke their way into stand-up comedy competition

Susan Du

Twelve Northwestern students competed in a stand-up competition Tuesday night covering topics such as narcolepsy, situations that produce sweat, the “son of Gump” and life philosophies as told through a series of rock analogies.

They vied to be among eight contestants forming an NU team to participate in the fourth annual Rooftop Comedy National College Comedy Competition 2011, which is presented by TBS. Nearly 60 students attended the event in the Tech Ryan Family Auditorium.

The winners, as chosen by the audience, were Weinberg sophomores Chloe Cole and Alexander Risman, Weinberg junior Kelly Kreft, Communication sophomores Gregory Uzelac and Alec Khan, Communication juniors Jake Marcks and Lex Singer and SESP junior Daniel Perlman.

NCCC calls itself a talent search for the nation’s funniest college students. It includes competitions in two general categories: Funniest Stand-up Comedy Team and Funniest Filmmaker. Four stand-up contestants will win a VIP trip to perform at the TBS Just for Laughs comedy festival in Chicago, and the funniest filmmaker will have the winning film featured in distinguished festivals across the nation.

At Tuesday’s competition, each contestant had three minutes of stage time.

One contestant, NSTV director Marcks, skulked on stage toward the lone microphone at its center and said, “I have a cat. My cat’s really bad at grinding. Sometimes it’s like she doesn’t even want to dance.”

At the next round of the competition on March 9, NU’s comedy team will face off against Columbia College’s team in a challenge that will eliminate 16 of the original 32 teams.

Performances can be viewed online, where students may also vote in support of their home teams.

After regionals, surviving teams will move on to a conference-level challenge during which eight more teams will be eliminated. The eight advancing teams will film videos roasting their rivals.

Of the four remaining teams after the rival roast round, judges will make the final decision to name one team winner of the competition.

Cole, one of the winners, said although it was cool to see other NU comedians and professionals perform, being judged for a national competition made her more nervous than she had been in a long time.

“I’m pretty confident about taking on Columbia,” Cole said. “We dominated them last year. I know some open mic kids there, and I would say they’re into weirder comedy, whereas ours is smarter.”

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