The Latino Fest Committee at University of Illinois at Chicago hosted their annual LOL Comedy Show for the year a couple weeks ago. As myself and another Runt staff member attended, I spoke to a handful of Latino Fest Committee members about the show, including May Morales, Vice President of the school’s Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority. The comedy show was the first fundraiser for the Latino Fest Committee to raise money for their annual Latino Fest Sabor de Culturas, Embracing Our Roots, hosted in the spring.
This show caught my eye, not only because it was a comedy show, but because it was something that I never expected a Latino Committee to use. Often you go to a bar or comedy club to see comedians perform, but when they gather at a school to help raise money it can change people’s perspective of comedy, a perspective where comedy is performed not just for laughs, but for a good cause.
When asked why the Committee chose to do a comedy to help fund their upcoming festival, May explained, “UIC organizations tend to have talent shows, dance offs, etc. We wanted something different and we had a contact – Alex.”
Alex Orozco was the emcee of the show. Alex is a Chicago comedian fresh off a trip from Las Vegas to perform a show of his own. He became a part of the show when his cousin, a member of the Committee contacted him for help. This year marked his third time hosting the annual show at UIC.
Being the committee’s main link to Chicago comedy, it was Alex who was in charge of wrangling more comedians for the show, but May said, “We also extended the invite to people our committee members knew would be interested, thus the couple of UIC students participating.”
The line up for the show was as follows, Alex Orozco, Dave Garro, Emily Lake, Drew Michael, Dino Spezzini, and Matt Slater. Bringing the laughs was no easy task, but they all delivered. Check out some of the highlights below.
Committee member Cynthia Valentin said about the performance, “Drew was hilarious! One of the funniest people I’ve ever seen and heard.” She was happy with the event’s turnout and hopes their other fundraisers will be just as successful.
May, who organized the event, was also very happy with the turnout. “We were very paranoid about our ticket sales because many [people] would ask, ‘Who is coming?’ And of course we weren’t featuring any big names, just a good group of comedians. Overall it gave all of us a needed laugh. Especially because it was during the middle of the week, when most of us are very stressed.” The Committee definitely accomplished just that – a good way to get people relaxed for the rest of the week.
The show was a definite success. Check out the comedians and go see them whenever you get a chance! And be sure to keep an eye out for future fundraisers from the Latino Fest Committee supporting Latino Fest Sabor de Culturas, Embracing Our Roots (happening March 30-31, 2011).
-Olivia Garcia, The Runt staff member