Sunday, March 1, 2009

Calvin Evans I Aint Lyin' One Year Anniversary World Premiere

A year ago on February 21,2008 I created, produce, directed and marketed my first comedy show Calvin Evans "I Aint Lyin'. The concept had been in my mind for 6 months and I didnt know how to turn this thought into a reality. There were no groups on campus I thought I could work with to put this show together, and I didnt have the money to do it on my own. While brainstoriming with my right hand man Ray Bennett, he gave me the idea to create our own Registered Student Organization(RSO), by doing so I would be able to use the campus buildings for little or no charge. After getting my RSO "High Times Comedy Inc." approved we began planning for what we thought would be our comedy empire on campus. We plan to specialize in sketch comedy in a Dave Chappelle like format. Unfortunatley things didnt workout so perfectly and we ened up going an entire semester not doing anything with the RSO. Finally we decided to push the show, in between putting together the show I performed for Sonya D opening up for Pierre in Bloomington ( see "Lost Tape") so I was going into my show with the confidence and momentum from that performance. I walked around campus for days plastering building with my I Aint Lyin posters. The phrase "I Aint Lyin'" came from my father, who I think is the funniest man on earth. I told him if I ever had a show I would call it "I Aint Lyin'" and so I did. The show was scheduled for 7pm Thursday February 21st. Now the marketing department had messed up my fliers after I cursed them out for taking 3 weeks to create my flier which was fairly simple and they didnt put the time on it. So I hand wrote the time on every flier and pass them out. Fast forward to the day of the show, I go to the Courtyard Cafe before the show so I can start to prepare myself and get the stage set up. Its 6:45 and people are still in the cafe drinking coffee, talking, studying, whatever, and Im like "what the hell is going on" I have a show in 15 minutes and nothing is set up. I talk to one of the employees and they tell me they have me down for 8 O'clock! So now Im really pissed, I have people showing up for the show at the correct time and I have tell them to relax for an hour, some do and some cant, so I have people in and out and Im freaking out because this may affect my overall turn out, not to mention it a blizzard going on outside. In my mind the odds are working against me, but none the less I still wanna put on a good show for the people. As 8pm rolls around I go back stage and change clothes, the Cafe is looking pretty full and Im ready to do something I always dreamed of. This was my Madison Square Garden performance but on a smaller scale for my peers, teachers and family. I went on stage and did what many professional comedians haven't, my own show, and produced and sold a dvd following the show. So with out further a due I give you, for FREE, Calvin Evans "I Aint Lyin'". I truly hope you enjoy this show because it was truly a dream realized.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Lost Tape.......

By last year around this time I had hosted a few shows and did a little stand up around campus but I hadn't ventured off into the unknown. I had alway done shows on campus for people who knew me and I felt gave me the benefit of the doubt and didnt boo my ass right away. So I had some local success but never tried my act else where and I didnt know how to take it on the road. Then one night I got a call from my father telling me that comedian Sonya D was hosting a show in Bloomington, IL, 30 minutes from Champaign. So while talking to him I remembered that my mother has a friend who is Sonya D's cousin. Now honestly Im just talking and say to my father Ill look into, not expecting to really get into the show. So I call my mother and tell her about it and she tells me she'll see if she can get into contact with her. A few days go by and the thought of being in the show or even going to see the show is completely out of my mind, then I get an email that says: "Calvin just be at the Hotel by 7:30 and I will give you 10-15 min slot..Forward the bottom portion to alllll your friends and let them know you are opening for Pierre! SD " I read this and I go nuts, Im going to be opening up for Sonya D and Pierre (the light skinned dude from How to be a Player). Now when it comes to writing and rehearsing jokes Im terrible at it, I hate it because in my mind I like to believe Im like Jay Z when it comes to telling jokes, I just come straight from the dome with the jokes, but my girlfriend kept telling me to practice, practice, practice, so I decided to sit down and put my thoughts on paper. Then I tried a few on her and she wasnt taking to the jokes, so I went back and did some editing and changed a few things and she liked it. So I go pick up my right hand men Ray Bennett and Andes Lopez and we head to Bloomington. We get there and hour before showtime and Im nervous as shit, and I go to shake Sonya D's hands and she says "Alright now, yo ass better be funny" and all I could do was smile and nod my head. The show starts and Sonya D is the host, and let me say publicly she is the funniest female comedian I have ever seen in my life and I love her to death. She is killing the crowd with just unscripted unrehearsed jokes on the fly, and I could see she was born to do this. Now this is where the title comes into to play, the video of this show I did not have until I found it in my mothers camera a few months ago, and this will be the first time I showed it to anyone. After the show Sonya D told me that I had what it takes to be successful in comedy and that I should be established in a years time. Take a look at the 6 minute set that won over Sonya D and a room full of Bloomington residents.

Me and Sonya D

Me and Pierre

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Calvin Chronicles.....who,what and where?

The Calvin Chronicles was an idea that my good friend Ray Bennett and myself came up with as a way to give people a glispe of who Calvin Evans really is and let them see me in my natural element. People always ask me when's my next show or if they've never seen my stand up, they ask me to tell them a joke on the spot. Now I dont know about your job but I believe comedy is the only job you have to always validate yourself on the spot. For instance, you never find out someones a baker and tell them to bake some shit on on the spot, you take their word for it. So to avoid putting on 20 personal shows every two days the Calvin Chronicles was created as a reference for the curious. The first episode that I have here, was really rough because I didnt have a template, it was point and shoot, so it's a little choppy but if you watch episodes 2-5 you can see that we came up with a format. The beginning theme was a montage of all a few shows I had done, giving viewers a visual of my prior work. The music is compliments of Larry McDonalds aka Soundz. You can find all the episodes on the my "Links to More Calvin". Check it out.......

Funnybones Don't Get Broken?

Yes. Funny bones don't break. Laughter is one of the few things in our lives that can't be denied or destroyed because it comes from the soul. It has the power to make us forget about bills, work, obligations, and shortcomings. It continues to remind us of our similarities, while simultaneously celebrating our own uniqueness. It is a sanctuary of shared experiences...a collective vehicle that carries each of us safely over life's awkward moments and harsh times. And, even if only for a brief moment, it is the best luxury that life affords us. In sickness and in health, to death do we part...Funny bones don't get broken.