Standing room only was the theme of the evening at Elon Tonight’s season three premiere.
The student-produced sketch comedy show had its first showing of the academic year at 9 p.m. Oct. 24 in McEwen 011. The highly anticipated event was both stressful and exciting for producers, actors and writers.
“I think it’s something that we can really be proud of,” said Scott Richardson, executive producer. “It’s definitely a step up in production quality. We set a high standard and we sustained it.”
The new benchmark set by Richardson and executive producer Andy Hurst was attained by a renewed commitment to the show. The staff welcomed more than 40 new members since last season and has experienced a contagious energy from freshmen.
“It doesn’t seem real based on where we were last year that we have so many people that want to be here and show up and will do the necessary work to get it done,” Richardson said.
Freshmen formed the show’s first public relations team, which organized the premiere. These students also took on responsibilities as actors and writers.
“I’m a ‘Saturday Night Live’ junkie, so I was drawn to the show,” freshman actor Kelsey McCabe said. “When I saw the cast list, I literally screamed.”
Her excitement was not unusual. According to Richardson, freshmen have expressed interest in Elon Tonight since before the year began.
“This summer, I got a couple emails that said ‘Elon Tonight is one of the reasons why I wanted to come to Elon,’ which is very uplifting and at the same time it puts a lot of pressure on me, but it’s a good feeling,” he said.
The executive producers had high hopes for the season’s debut. After what Hurst called a “fresh start,” the group believes it had the chance to make something the Elon community would want to see.
And they did. The Elon Tonight team offered an encore presentation immediately following the premiere to accommodate students forced to sit on the floor, in the aisles and stand in the doorway.
“I want people to be upset that there wasn’t enough room to watch it,” Richardson said.