LIVE FROM NEW BRUNSWICK IT’S THURSDAY NIGHT?

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Rutgers University and the State Theater Present SNL’s Head Writer for a Night of College-Friendly Comedy.

“I think freshmen are the coolest kids on any college campus,” began Seth Meyers on Thursday night, to a cheering crowd of mostly college students. “I hate juniors,” the Saturday Night Live head writer continued. “You’re the worst. … “Seniors, based on your enthusiasm you have not checked in on the state of the economy.”

Meyers had good reason to prepare college-friendly material because the event was co-sponsored not only by the State Theater, but also the Rutgers University Performance Association (RUPA). His material reflected the crowd, including jokes about dating, relationships, college, the economy (Greece has a “yogurt-based economy”), and politics (a second-term inauguration is like renewing your wedding vows: “Congratulations. You almost got divorced.”).

Meyers performed more than 90 minutes alone after SNL co-star, Jay Pharaoh, cancelled his appearance due to scheduling conflicts. Without a break, Meyers, wearing a familiar “Weekend Update”-type suit, delivered a standup routine of new and old material (The Euro crisis, Greek yogurt bit was previously done on SNL’s Weekend Update.) Meyers also occasionally interacted directly with the crowd, including the closing segment where he posed in mock-standup positions so that the audience could take photos and pretend they were moments from the actual routine.

RUPA, which planned the event, is a student-run programming council that provides an assortment of events throughout the school year. RUPA aims to appeal to diverse student interests. They offer film, theater, concert, art, and community events. Meyers’ appearance Thursday night was orchestrated by RUPA’s comedy and media committee.

Meyers appeared to be a good choice by RUPA, based on the audience’s reaction. He took the stage to a cheering crowd and received a standing ovation at the end of the show. Afterwards, students lingered in the lobby to actively discuss the show and take pictures with friends, and had to be asked to clear the lobby by theater staff.

Audience member, Rendell Tababan, both a Rutgers student and RUPA member, represents the event’s target audience. Asked what made him and his friends attend the show, Tababan replied “I love Seth Meyers and I love RUPA.” He first heard of the event through RUPA’s Facebook page.

RUPA is key to selecting and promoting events throughout the Rutgers Community, but Thursday’s event was co-sponsored by the State Theater, which has a partnership with the university to present events at reduced prices with the discount code LoveRU

Word of mouth and social media were key to promoting the show through the Rutgers community. Audience member and Seth Meyers fan Shawn Smith saw the event on both Facebook and Twitter. Megan Conry is one of the “regular people”/non-student attendees and heard of the event through a friend who is a student. Asked about what she expected out of the night, Conry offered “I went because I didn’t even know Seth Meyers did stand up and I wanted to see if he was good at it. … I thought the show was great and would totally recommend it.”

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