Hannah Benson: Comedy

Need a good laugh? Well, just go to Hannah Benson for that! Read her #PassionPreview: “I'm passionate about comedy. I grew up in a Saturday Night Live household, and everything from my parents' recitations of Will Ferrell's cowbell rampage to the Garth and Kat-like acts my sister and I used to perform at sleepovers turned me into a fanatic while I was still in elementary school. I was a theater kid all through middle and high school, and was told I had a knack for comedic timing, as I was time and time again cast as a supplementary sidekick character that did little to advance the plot but cracked killer jokes. It wasn't too bad of a deal. Before I even realized the depth of my passion for comedy, I was already the local comic relief. When I came to Elon I found myself auditioning for Elon Tonight, a sketch comedy show that took me in and reaffirmed my love for making people laugh. I tried stand-up as a dare at an open mic (for musicians) once and was hooked. There was no going back.”


Why comedy? “Comedy is not only the obvious -- something that makes people laugh, but it brings people together in ways that no other art form really can. Regardless of your religion, race, gender or beliefs, 10 out of 10 people in a room would laugh at a convincing Peter Griffin impression. People also need comedy, in our dark and depressing world, more than ever. If you can get 50 people from completely different walks of life in a room together for an hour and get them to forget about their impending divorce, their trouble at work or their fight with their mother-in-law, then you've impacted someone's life. That means a lot to me.”

To someone not interested in comedy: “If someone doesn't enjoy comedy, they need it more than anyone else.”

To someone interested in comedy: “Do it. It's liberating. Throwing yourself very much over the edge of the cliff with the likely possibility that no one will catch you? It's absolutely terrifying. But once you do it and do fail, nothing else will scare you. Then you can work on getting better.”


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