Kevin Yee visits Lawrence

Comedians have been coming to our campus the entire time I have been a student here, and regrettably, the first time I have ever gone to see one was last Saturday at 10 p.m. when I saw Kevin Yee perform in the Warch Campus Center. He came out on stage smiling and beaming at all of us, thanking us for being there, pointing out that there were cookies and lemonade in the back. Yee’s stage personality was very happy and positive, and he said that he would like to tell us about himself before he sang us a couple of songs. He joked about singing songs for a living, which received laughter from the audience, and proceeded to tell us about his background in musical theatre.

As soon he started his first song, which he said was an educational song (it was called “Gay Love”), I instantly recognized the musical theatre background that he had mentioned. The songs themselves were queued up on a computer by one of Lawrence’s own Tech Crew (they would begin when Yee told the Tech Crew member to “Hit it, DJ”) and each one of them had the eccentricity of musical theatre. The chorus of “Gay Love” went: “You can’t get pregnant making gay love, I’ve tried and I’ve tried, oh trust me I’ve tried.” He clearly enjoyed the crowd’s reaction to his performance, even going up to an older woman in the front row and singing the lyrics, loudly, straight at her. At the end of the song, he exclaimed, “Surprise, I’m gay!”

The next song he sang, after some banter with the audience, was called “Starbucks” — a tribute to the famed coffee shop. He went around near the end, delightedly holding up the mic to the audience members, getting them to sing along (which I did) before running back to the stage and singing through several comedic modulations that seemed to parody “Love on Top” by Beyoncé.

Another song that stood out to me was “Vegan,” five minutes Yee spent making fun of veganism. Afterward, he bantered with the older woman in the front row, whom he had by then nicknamed “Gluten-Free.” The chorus of the song with which he closed proclaimed that the audience must now go and “like” his stuff on all forms of social media and buy his CDs or “a squirrel’s gonna die.”

I personally did not find Yee’s sense of humor incredibly funny, but I do not see why others would not. He had an outstanding singing voice, honed after performing in musicals for several years. The backing tracks all sounded very similar, and after “Gay Love” and “Starbucks,” the songs became less memorable. I preferred when he had some prepared monologue to transition between songs, as I thought that that was when he was at his funniest. I also enjoyed his personality, which seemed really sincere and bubbly. He was genuinely psyched that we came to his show, and wished us all well after we took a picture with him in front of the Mead Witter fireplace.

 

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