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Comedian Dat Phan to visit SMC

Anneliese Woolford | Friday, March 19, 2004

Saint Mary’s O’Laughlin Auditorium will adapt to a makeshift comedy club tonight as the College hosts stand-up comedian Dat Phan, recently named NBC’s Last Comic Standing.Since earning the recognition in August, Phan has appeared on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, taped his own special airing on Comedy Central and launched a national tour. Combined, these endeavors have made Phan a recognized name in his industry and illustrate a primary reason behind the request for him to perform on campus.”I met Dat in New York this fall … he is very excited about coming to Saint Mary’s,” said Richard Baxter, director of special events. “He enjoys performing at colleges and has been quite generous with his time, wherever he goes.”Baxter first conceived of the idea to bring Phan to campus after receiving contact from an agent with whom he formerly worked. He then approached the College’s Student Activities Board for co-sponsorship and assistance in funding the event. Board members sought additional sponsorship from the Pacific-Asian Club, Multi-Cultural Events, Student Diversity Board and the Center for Women’s Intercultural Leadership.”Comedians are always a great draw here at Saint Mary’s, and we as a board thought it would be a great opportunity to bring a big name to campus,” said Lauren Fabina, SAB spirit chairperson.Board president Becca Doll added the event will provide equal publicity for both Saint Mary’s and Phan’s career.”He seems really interested in our college community, which is always encouraging,” she said.In addition to his main stage performance at 7 p.m., Phan will meet with a playwriting class and eat dinner with members of CWIL and PAC to discuss his Vietnamese-American upbringing. He also plans to join students at Midnight Madness in the Angela Athletic Facility following his routine. “We feel lucky to be able to set the pace for his career,” Doll said. “When you show people a good time, they are likely to give back in the future. He will talk to others and continue to give Saint Mary’s a good reputation, encouraging other budding names to venture to South Bend.”