September 26, 2020

Cho cracks up Kendall without crudity

By Gabriela Castelan

Comedian Henry Cho performed at the College as part of Experience Asia Month. (Tim Lee / Photo Editor)
Comedian Henry Cho performed at the College as part of Experience Asia Month. (Tim Lee / Photo Editor)

Equipped with stories about family and daily life, comedian Henry Cho seized the Kendall Hall stage with his Southern twang. Students enjoyed the comedian’s performance on Nov. 3 as part of Experience Asia Month, sponsored by the Asian American Association (AAA).

Cho’s performance centered around his personal experience as an Asian American living in the south, complemented by his unexpected southern accent.

“I didn’t know I was supposed to be smart,” Cho said to the audience in reference to a typical Asian stereotype.

According to Nicole Magno, sophomore English secondary education major, it was clear that Cho defied expected Asian stereotypes. “You don’t hear a lot of Asians with southern accents,” she said.

During his act, Cho touched upon topics such as his wife and family life. However, his performance was interrupted when he identified audience members texting during the show. Cho said the constant texting and usage of phones during a show was very distracting.

Following the pattern of many guest comedians, the College itself became subject of Cho’s routine. He tackled coed floors, classes, the location of the College and graduating students’ “plans or lack thereof.”

“Man, I have to go back to school,” Cho said in reference to the College’s coed living arrangements.

Cho also recounted his start as a comedian in college, when he told his friends that he wanted to try comedy. “You’re not funny,” Cho said, imitating his friend’s voice. However, he said he “jumped in and tried it” and was then hired to work that same week.

Cho’s story-telling style reflects influence from Bill Cosby and Bob Newhart, who Cho mentioned made a significant impact on his approach to comedy.

Jen Hurler, sophomore interactive multimedia major, said unlike many comedians brought to the College, Cho’s “humor wasn’t crude,” which she said added to his appeal as a performer. While many students enjoyed Cho’s brand of comedy, some were slightly disappointed.

Calvin Woo, sophomore mathematics major, said that while he would see the show again, he felt that Cho didn’t touch on Asian American issues to the extent that he could have.

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