The few hundred Howard University students who packed Cramton Auditorium on February 25th to see Nick Cannon’s stand-up performance got a little more than they bargained for.
Five minutes into the show, Cannon stripped off his shirt. This was after the crowd interrupted his act, repeatedly chanting, “Take it off!” and “show us!”
For anyone who’s seen the comedian, it wouldn’t hurt the guy to pack on a few pounds. So it wasn’t a surprise that fans weren’t interested in peaking at his super-lean physique, but instead the notorious “Mariah” tattooed across his back.
Cannon, who wed multi-platinum singer Mariah Carey back in 2008, has a resume longer than most entertainers his age, yet the main buzz circulating the multi-faceted talent happens to be about his whirlwind romance with Carey. After numerous doubts that their “publicity-stunt” relationship was a faux, fans are now biting their tongues after recent news that the couple is expecting twins.
Once he appeased the audience, Cannon went on with his stand-up routine, the one area in his comedic career where he has struggled to earn approval. “I was actually really surprised how funny Nick was,” Howard senior Theo Graves said. “I found myself laughing, a lot actually. I’ve watched Nick on television for years and I don’t remember him being that funny.”
Billy Sorrells, an upcoming comedian from Houston, Texas also took the stage for the second time at Howard University this year. “That kid has tremendous talent,” said DC resident Ryan McConnell, who came out with his daughter to watch the show and also donate money to a good cause. “The ladies really seem to take a liking to him, even my little one was screaming when he came on stage. It’s a good thing to see black men using their celebrity to promote the beauty of ‘giving back,” he said.
The benefit comedy show was sponsored by Howard University’s Haitian Relief Fund, which was put together by students to raise money for the victims of last year’s devastating earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti that killed nearly 300,000 and left over 1.5 million homeless.
“It means so much to be able to put on a show and not only entertain, but as you know, they say laughter’s the best medicine,” Cannon said.
During both of the comedians’ performances, baskets were passed around the auditorium to collect donations, 100% of it going directly to Haiti.
“What people don’t realize is that the aftermath of a disaster is sometimes the most destructive,” Stevens said. “The media has stopped reporting on the people of Haiti, but death and poverty and illness still linger. We have to continue to help these people because they desperately need it.”