GW is known for its students being politics buffs, but not every student is looking to work in Congress. Some are just looking for laughs.
The Internet comedy channel RooftopComedy.com hosted a competition to find the funniest students at GW Monday night. More than a dozen students vied for eight spots in a comedy team that will represent GW at the regional competition against the University of Virginia on April 6.
The comedians covered a range of issues, with race and politics among the most popular.
“Using the race card, it’s like kicking someone out of a soccer game. Like, get out of my conversation,” freshman Madebo Fatunde said.
Junior Travis Helwig, the proprietor of TheColonialist.com, made fun of the famous Texan battle cry “to remember the Alamo.”
“I often feel guilty that I have absolutely no recollection of the Alamo,” Helwig said.
The host, Rajiv Satyal, also performed sets throughout the night. He drew on his Indian background as a source of laughs.
“If any joke is tacky, you just convert it to Indian,” Satyal said. “That’s why we can’t be terrorists. Our voices are too funny.”
Kevin Mead, a junior and one of the eight students chosen to move on to the regional competition, said they enjoyed the night.
“It feels really good (to win),” Mead said. “Something interesting about this contest is that while it was a competition, it’s not really a singular thing; the fact that there was a team of winners is cool. From what I understand of (RooftopComedy.com), it’s creating a comedy community, which for comedians is really important.”
Satyal said it was important for students to participate in events like this.
“I think (this competition) is a platform,” Satyal said. “Stand-up is such a great, honest way of expressing yourself. It’s a great way to express your emotions.”
Jenn Stokes, events marketing manager for RooftopComedy.com, said the competition gives college students the chance to show their humorous side.
“I think it’s a great platform to showcase the comedic talent of college students and give them an opportunity,” Stokes said.
Satyal had some advice for any students with comedic aspirations.
“I’d say the number one thing is to have fun,” he said. “I think the crowd sometimes doesn’t want to laugh as much as to just have fun, and if the crowd sees you having fun, they have fun. The second thing is persistence, which is important in any field.”
He also shared his views on comedy in society.
“The art (of comedy) is inversely related to the times,” Satyal said. “The worse the times are, the better the stand-up is.”
The winners on Monday night were Mead, Fatunde, Micah Foster, Chris Hayes, Travis Helwig, Kirk Larsen, Darren Miller and Emily Murphy.
After the regional competition against U-Va. , one student will advance to the Sweet 16, where four competitors will be selected to participate in the finals in Aspen, Colo.