“That’s it, I’m done. I’m not going to set myself on fire for you,” stand-up comedian Arvin Mitchell said.
And with that, Mitchell ended his set. The proclamation was appropriate because he had already done just about everything else: one-liners, impersonations, witty rantings, comedic reflections and a fair amount of mockery directed at the audience. Mitchell’s set was defined by variety as much as it was hilarity.
Mitchell performed in front of an audience of about 220 at the Bovee University Center Rotunda on Monday in coordination with the Multicultural Academic Student Service’s food taster event. Macaroni and cheese, mostaccioli, green beans and fried chicken were served at the event.
Mitchell gained popularity during his stint on BET’s comedy reality television show “Coming To The Stage,” where he finished as the runner-up in the show’s 2003 season. Mitchell has been heavily involved within the improv circuit since.
Comedian Roy Wood Jr. was originally scheduled to perform but had to cancel to pursue a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity with the Fox Network.
CMU Program Board and MASS have annually teamed up to present this event during February in celebration of Black History Month.
It was not a fact that was lost upon Mitchell.
“I’ve always wanted to get a petition signed, because we have the shortest month for Black History Month,” Mitchell said during the set. “That’s amazing. I’m mad about that … It’s a celebration.”
Program Board lecture chairman Jonathan Milliman said the event was a success for both Program Board and MASS.
“The event went really well,” the Bronson senior said. “Throughout the entire performance, Arvin Mitchell was interacting with the audience, and everyone had a great time.”
The event marks the last event Program Board will hold for Black History Month.
“The Black History events went really well,” Milliman said. “The events held showcased African-American culture.”
Jessika Kennedy, a Romulus freshman, said she enjoyed Mitchell because of the spark he gave the event.
“I thought he was funny,” Kennedy said. “He was real confident. He had great energy, personality and great jokes.”
Detroit junior Bianca Smith said she went to the event as a way to celebrate her birthday.
“I just thought it was a great way to kick off my birthday,” Smith said. “Food, comedy; I couldn’t go wrong.”
Farmington Hills senior Brittany Burden said she went to the event because of the price tag.
“It was only $3,” Burden said. “It was cheap. I was like, $3, hey, can’t beat that.”
Burden said one of the highlights of her evening was enjoying the food.
“The food was good,” Burden said. “The chicken was huge, though, but it was ripe.”