UF business administration student Julia Cousimeau began binge-watching “Saturday Night Live” after she learned one of its actors would perform on campus. She wanted to familiarize herself with his material before the show, which she got a second-row seat to watch.
“I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to see him,” the 20-year-old said.
She was one of hundreds of students who lined up outside University Auditorium to watch the 8 p.m. stand-up comedy performance by actor and comedian Jay Pharoah on Tuesday.
The Accent Speakers Bureau hosted the event — one of many throughout the year.
Chairman Gregory Wolf said the bureau brought Pharoah to campus because he has “mass appeal.”
“We needed to bring somebody that everybody would want to come see,” Wolf, 21, said. “Jay Pharoah was the perfect person.”
Accent staff handed out 850 tickets to students for the show, and tickets sold out Monday.
So many students were interested in seeing the act that a standby line of 200 students seeking admission formed outside the auditorium two hours before the show, Wolf said.
“He’s a master impressionist,” said Wolf. “Students of all ages are wildly attracted to his humor.”
Rising New York City comedian AJ Foster began the show with a 15-minute stand-up comedy act. He has also opened for comedians David Alan Grier and Damon Wayans Jr., Wolf said.
“The opening act was hilarious,” Cousimeau said. “I was not ready for that.”
Pharoah did impressions of Kanye West, Jay-Z, Kevin Hart, former President Barack Obama and President Donald Trump during his hourlong act.
He also brought attention to issues college students face such as drugs and sexual assault in his jokes.
“You should never force yourself on anybody,” he said, following a joke. “That’s the most heinous thing you could ever do.”
The crowd erupted in applause.
Frances Landrum, a UF digital art sciences student, appreciated that he brought up topics relevant to students her age.
“Seeing an administrator on stage telling us what to do or what not to do could be pretty hard, boring or triggering for some people,” Landrum, 20, said. “He made it something easy to talk about.”
She will never forget this performance, Landrum said.
“I’m keeping my ticket,” she said.
Jay Pharoah performed an hour-long comedy act for 850 attendees at University Auditorium on Tuesday.