By Nora Tarabishi, Bloc Reporter
Off the Wall, the University of Maryland’s only standup comedy club, held an open mic event Monday, Feb. 24 at Stamp.
Founded in 2008, the group is proudly the only comedy group on campus that does not hold auditions.
“Our philosophy is that if someone wants to do standup, we’ll give them the chance to do it,” said Isaac Hirsch, the group’s president since early 2011.
The group aims to have about four events per semester. This open mic was the group’s second event this semester.
“We had a showcase show in early February, which was a big success,” Hirsch said.
Hirsch plans to graduate after this semester and “hand off the reigns” to another group member.
Off the Wall has grown immensely within the past couple of years.
Luke Wienecke, an Off the Wall alumnus who still partakes in campus events, said that when he joined the group in 2011 it only consisted of five or six people.
Now it consists of about 30.
“While having a bigger group is awesome, it’s hard because not all our members can perform,” Wienecke said.
Wienecke, a December graduate, said that he struggles to find the time to fit standup into his everyday schedule.
“I really enjoy being on stage,” said Wienecke. “It’s just the driving that’s a slog.”
Monday’s show consisted of about 10 comics giving it all they’ve got. Student-comic Belton DeLaine-Facey performed for his second time ever.
“This show was a lot smaller compared to the first one of the semester,” DeLaine-Facey said.
DeLaine-Facey also shared how he prepares his material.
“The way I come up with my jokes is, I just take some of my messed up thoughts and pass them off as comedy,” DeLaine-Facey said.
The group strives to have meetings as often possible—however it’s been difficult for them this semester.
During their meetings, they practice new material, give each other feedback and prepare for upcoming shows.
For more information about UMD’s Off the Wall, like their page on Facebook at: