By Alex LaRoza
If you are looking for a more substantial laugh on a Saturday night than people watching, here’s a suggestion. Stop by the MUB Comedy Club.
Unfortunately, if you haven’t gone you might have missed your opportunity for this semester. On Saturday, Nov. 14, the MUB Comedy Club held its final show of the fall semester. But don’t worry, next semester’s shows are intended to be bigger and better than ever.
“The really cool thing is that we’ve had three different comedy nights, and those three comedy nights combined equal off our opening night comedian,” said Dave Zamansky, the head of the MUB Comedy Club. “We spent more on the opening night comedian than the three comedians combined.”
Zamansky pointed out that with each consecutive show that the club puts on, more and more students show up. The club is advertised to students not only through flyers, but through word-of-mouth, social media, and clubs like MUSO. Even though UNH has held a couple of comedy open-mic nights in the Strafford room through Campus Activity Board (CAB), there hasn’t been a comedy club at UNH prior to this semester.
“Over the years, there have been times where we didn’t have any major program going on in the MUB on a weekend night. And so I finally started thinking ‘How can we do this?’ ‘Can we bring in some entertainment that’s cheaper than what we usually do?’
Thankfully, the answer was yes, and Zamansky has been successful booking local comedians that are $1000 or less. Zamansky plans on co-sponsoring a show with MUSO, and is looking forward to future plans. “So far, we’ve had a good amount of people, but we want to also diversify. We’d love to have a woman performer.”
UNH Sketched-Out Comedy Troupe’s own Jayce Lamar opened up for New York City comedian Aaron Kominos-Smith, formerly an architecture major, perhaps not a career path one would expect from a stand-up comic.
“I did improv in high school, then I did improv in college, and then I had an Architecture job after college in New York City, and was doing stand-up here and there,” said Kominos-Smith. “It eventually reached a point where you’re doing one show a month, and then two shows a month.”
Although he’s had a few higher-profile television gigs, Kominos-Smith still feels that no-one knows his name yet.
“I did a small thing on Inside Amy Schumer. I had something on MTV on an episode of Yo Mama way back. I had some small thing on American Movie Class, talking about TV movies. But there’s no ‘one big break.’ You just do more shows, and the more shows you do, the more shows you get to do.”
Kominos-Smith’s comedy is largely based around absurd observations about life, but he is of the philosophy that the best comedy ideas happen by accident. “You drive by a billboard, and you’re like ‘That’s a little odd. How can I express that oddness in a funny way?’” he says. The advice he gives to aspiring comedians is similarly straight-forward.
“I’m of the opinion that anyone could be a stand-up comic. Anyone who has their own unique point of view on anything could be a stand-up comic,” said Kominos-Smith.
The key to being successful, he says, is not just being funny around your friends. Rather, it’s to keep trying to find open mic events, and not to give up.
“Before you know it, you’ll say ‘Ooh, I did get a really good laugh!’ and then eventually, that laugh will make you feel so good that you’re gonna want more.”
Kominos-Smith’s plans for the future are similarly humble and realistic.
“I’ve got more colleges, cause I do a good amount of colleges each semester, and they’re always fun. That and just keep pushing, running the grind, trying to get on some of those late night shows for the people that don’t know about me.,” he said.
As for the future of the MUB Comedy Club, it can only grow larger from here on out.