Just six days after the 2012 Presidential Election, President Barrack Obama visited Cornell University… in spirit. Rather, Jay Pharoah, the comedian best known for his uncanny impersonation of our nation’s 44th President, graced the Statler Auditorium stage on Sunday November 11, 2012.
The event, hosted by Cornell University Program Board, opened with a performance by stand-up comic Gary Scott ’08.
An Alum himself, Scott cracked several classic, nonetheless hilarious, Cornell jokes.
“On a Saturday night, getting lucky, you just walk through the halls in Donlon!” he reminisced.
Scott also proved that life after Cornell can be funny, if not slightly disturbing. He suggested that many members of the audience will eventually graduate, only to find jobs as custodians in shady massage parlors. However, he insisted that our Cornell degrees will enable us at least to be the head of the clean-up crew.
After concluding his act, Scott introduced the night’s headliner, “the man of a million voices,” Jay Pharoah.
When Pharoah took the stage, he immediately introduced himself by reminding us in the audience that he, too, was an Ivy Leaguer.
“I went to Harvard,” he boasted, “It was a nice visit….”
For the remainder of the show, Pharoah entertained the audience with his hysterical insights on topics ranging from sex to racism to working at a Golden Corral.
Pharoah’s comedic chops truly shined when he delivered his celebrity impersonations. Whether he was being Chris Rock, Drake, or Family Guy’s Stewie, Pharoah’s mimicry was incredibly impressive.
My personal favorite impression was his Barrack Obama voice. Of course, after he said goodnight, I had to ask Pharoah if he had ever met the man whose voice had brought him so much fame. The answer was no. However, in his perfect Obama voice, Pharoah continued that if he ever were to meet the President, he would expect their conversation to go something like this:
“President: Who is this guy? He sounds exactly like me, but he is very much darker.
Me: Well, that’s because I’m not Barrack Obama—I’m Choco-Bama”