Photo by Steve Barnum / Reporter
Roars of laughter filled the room, and joke by joke, the audience grew warmer.
2015 winner of NBC’s “Last Comic Standing” Clayton English, a stand-up comedian, actor and writer, delivered a night of comedy to the students crammed into MTSU’s Tucker Theatre Monday night as part of Connection Point’s Week of Welcome Night of Comedy.
He kicked the night off by addressing one of our country’s biggest elephants in the room — race.
“Y’all been watching the news,” English asked his audience. “S–t got everybody scared. (I’m going to) tell you right now, you scared. It’s okay to be scared, temporarily, but you can’t stay scared because you can’t operate in a place of fear.”
His tone, which began somewhat serious, was quickly lightened.
“Right now, everybody is scared,” English said. “This is America. Everybody isn’t supposed to be scared at the same time. We’re supposed to take turns.”
Throughout his entire set, English showed a knack for taking sensitive subjects, such as race, sex and drugs, that the media is known for amplifying, and turned them into lighthearted fun. He showed his audience that the very sensitive topics most fear are not really all that sensitive at all.
At one moment, he asked for all of the Latino people in the crowd to make some noise and said, “Come on, Donald Trump ain’t here; you all can make some more noise than that.”
Towards the middle of his set, English strayed away from how the media plays into fear mongering, but he continued to joke about topics that our society views as sensitive, including sexual orientation and religion.
Because of English’s smooth transitions, guests of his act could have easily missed the key takeaways, but if anything that just speaks to his successfulness, which often includes influences from other comedians like Dave Chappelle, who English has worked alongside.
English stood out Monday night, because of his unique way of catering to multiple backgrounds. So much so that guests were devastated as English shared his final joke, knowing there wouldn’t be another to follow.
English will soon be featured on the upcoming season of Netflix’s “LOVE.”
For more information on Clayton English, click here.
To contact Lifestyles Editor Tayhlor Stephenson, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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