Creating Comedy: English teacher to host sketch comedy show, works alongside students

Creating Comedy: English teacher to host sketch comedy show, works alongside students

Wrapping up the scene, junior Charlie Stebbins acts in a sketch for FNL. Stebbins plays five characters in the show. “Comedy is not about worrying if I have five different, well-developed characters,” Stebbins said. “It’s about creating five ways to make the audience laugh.”

Gennifer Geer, Managing Editor

A semiannual tradition from Repertory Theatre, Friday Night Live (FNL) imitates the sketch comedy style of NBC’s Saturday Night Live. Tonight at 7 p.m., English Language Arts teacher Kelsey Bakalar will host the show and act in sketches.

Drama teacher Jeff Yarnell approached Bakalar at the beginning of this school year about hosting, and she said the invitation was unexpected.

“I think about the people who have hosted [such as physics teacher John] Holloway,” Bakalar said. “That’s Holloway’s thing. He’s good at that. I’m good at making a fool of myself. So, I think I’ll be OK in that sense, but I was surprised.”

Junior Olivia Carter said she predicts Bakalar will be entertaining in the show.

“She’s going to be funny because she’s a quirky person,” Carter said. “She did a lot of performing arts when she was younger, so I think she’s going to have a lot of fun.”

Bakalar said though she hasn’t attended past FNL shows, she’s looking forward to participating tonight.

“It’s harder for me to connect with the theater department because I have small children,” she said. “I can take small children to sporting events, but it’s harder for me to bring them to a play or a musical.”

The Rep Theatre students had the chance to write sketches, and Carter said she contributed some for Bakalar.

“I wrote one about how nobody can believe [Bakalar] is a teacher because she’s so short,” Carter said. “When she walks in the room, everyone just laughs at her.”

Bakalar said getting to know the students better is a driving motivation for her excitement.

“I’ve had two of my former students who are in that class approach me with skits they’re writing,” Bakalar said. “I think it’ll be a blast. It’ll be fun to go back to working with them when I enjoyed them when they were freshmen.”