As the semester's work begins to pile up, the Entertainment Board (E-Board) will bring a weekend opportunity for students to take a break and laugh with live comedy this Saturday at Jack Magee's Pub.
The headliner for the show is Kelly MacFarland, a professional comedian from Boston.
MacFarland began her career close to campus: she entered a contest in Portland, won, and has been working as a comedian ever since. She describes her style of comedy as being sassy and very true to herself.
"I tell it like it is. My stories come from a very honest place and I can't do it any other way," said MacFarland. "It's okay to laugh at yourself. That's what I'm all about."
MacFarland is known not only for her comedic talents, but also for her appearance on season one of NBC's "The Biggest Loser." She has opened for Melissa Etheridge and has performed with other stars including Caroline Rhea, Mario Cantone and Damon Wayans. MacFarland is grateful for all of the opportunities she's had, both as a comedian and in television, but one of her most memorable events was opening for LeAnn Rimes.
"She came to my dressing room and introduced herself," said MacFarland. "She thanked me for doing the show. Are you kidding me?"
Bowdoin student Will Alexander '12 will provide the opening entertainment for MacFarland. Alexander was also chosen by the E-Board for the event following rounds of student interviews and auditions.
Alexander has been doing improv for three years, but Saturday will be his first time doing stand-up comedy. Even though he is just now making his official debut, comedy has always been a part of Alexander's life.
"My older brother was always someone I looked up to, and I thought he was hilarious," said Alexander. "I figured if I wanted to be cool like him, I had to be funny. I'm still working on both those things."
Alexander predicts his performance on Saturday will involve "material that an Eddie Izzard-Jim Carrey love baby would write, performed by a young Bob Saget." He is unsure whether his humorous hobby will become his career, but he hopes to stay connected to the improv and comedy worlds after Bowdoin.
"After seeing what some of the Improvabilities alums are doing, I've become interested in doing improv and stand-up comedy after college," said Alexander. "It would be difficult to make it into a profession so I may just have to keep it as a hobby. I think by the time I graduate, the improv alums will all be famous comedians and I can just tag along."
It's not easy getting a break in the comedy world, but MacFarland encourages prospective comedians to keep working for it.
"I was horrible my first couple of years, but I just kept at it. I turned a corner and I found my way," said MacFarland. "Nothing comes easy in life. You'll get there if you just stay true to yourself."
The E-Board chose to host a comedy show to add variety to the multiple entertainment-based events happening on campus every weekend.
"We really like the idea of a comedy show because it will allow students to take a break from the stress of classes, homework, and exams to come laugh," said sophomore Antonio Watson of the E-Board. "People have a lot of faith in us as a selected board of students, so we need to make sure that we're doing everything that we can to make Bowdoin students happy."
For those interested in staying up-to-date with future E-Board events, they will soon be launching not just a Web site, but an interactive Web community.
"You'll be able to share photos, read minutes from E-Board meetings, find out more information about who the E-Board is looking at, make your own suggestions, and vote on E-Board decisions," said Watson. "It's going to be a really great tool for Bowdoin to be more hands-on about the entertainment that comes to campus."
The comedy show will be in Jack Magee's Pub from 8:30-9 p.m., Saturday, February 13.