Stand-up comedian Drew Lynch humors Winona State


Nathan Kronbeck

Comedian Drew Lynch visited Winona State University on April 12. Lynch was brought on behalf of the Warrior Entertainment Network. Much of the show was heavily based around interactions between Lynch and the audience which made for a unique and humorous show.

From jokes about Winona to interacting with audience members, comedian Drew Lynch performed a show like no other. 

Drew Lynch, the popular comedian and finalist on America’s Got Talent, performed at Winona State University to a packed crowd of students, faculty and community members. The event was on Wednesday, April 12, and was organized by the Warrior Entertainment Network.

When he was 19, Lynch moved from Indianapolis to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting. In his 20s, Lynch developed a stutter after a softball accident that damaged his vocal cords. Although his vocal cords have healed, the rest of Lynch’s life and career have changed forever. 

Frustrated in the hospital and unable to speak the way he was used to, Lynch wrote down all he was feeling. He then used comedy to cope with his injury. Faced with unexpected change, he switched his dream of acting to comedy. 

In 2015, Lynch went to America’s Got Talent and received a golden buzzer from Howie Mendel. This allowed him to skip rounds and go straight to the live performances. 

“The person I was before would probably never hangout with who I am today,” Lynch commented during his audition on America’s Got Talent. 

Lynch commented that before his injury he was really just a jerk. After the injury he wanted to prove that he can turn something perceived as negative into something that is positive.

Audiences fell in love with Lynch because of his honest and positive lifestyle. Since then, Lynch has headlined comedy clubs all over the world and has a podcast called “Did I Stutter?!” on Spotify.

In preparation for the event in Kryzsko Commons, not only did the Warrior Entertainment Network print cardboard cut outs of Drew Lynch, but they also dressed up a fellow employee in green balloons the day before the event. After dressing up in balloons, they prompted students to pop balloons on the employee with safety pins as a creative way to advertise the event.

The event itself was packed with students and adults. Easing the audience into the show, Lynch’s friend and fellow comedian, Justin Foster took the stage. Following up Foster, Lynch walked on stage as the crowd cheered.

“It definitely was a comedy show like no other,” first-year student Rose Cases said. “I expected a practiced act, but most of it was him interacting with the audience which I thought was unique.”

What was most impressive about Lynch’s performance was his ability to make fun of himself while still maintaining a sense of confidence and self-assurance. 

“It’s too deep for you,” an audience member said making fun of Lynch’s height, while Lynch was talking about the depth of the Mississippi River. 

“If they found me and I drowned in five feet eight inches of water… and he just had a straw,” Lynch said, going along with the insult and maintaining comedic relief.

Lynch did not shy away from his stutter; instead, he incorporated it into his jokes in a way that was both hilarious and endearing. His humor was relatable and universal but at times controversial.  

With about three-quarters of the audience appearing to be above the age of 25, Lynch definitely knew how to appeal to the audience’s humor. Throughout the night he made multiple jokes referencing things in Winona, at Winona State and relatable humor to the older audience.

Lynch poked fun at how Winona State is a “dry campus”. He also taunted the Warrior Entertainment Network about the quality of the curtains and stage that were set up for the show.

“I don’t know who was in charge of curtains but you know… they got some sh*t from Michael’s,” Lynch said. “The furniture and panels department, you guys killed it … I’m telling you [last night] they were like ‘I can’t take this dry campus anymore.’”

A recurring joke that Lynch returned to many times throughout the night involved a family in the audience who all came to the event wearing tie-dyed moonshine shirts. 

“Are you guys wearing moonshine T-shirts?” Lynch asked. “Hell yeah,” one of the women wearing the shirts said. “That’s exactly the response you’d hope to get from people wearing moonshine t-shirts,” Lynch said after he mimicked the way the woman said “hell yeah”. 

Lynch also made jokes about Winona like when he said the members of the community chant “Za Za” to the sugarloaf gods so that the rock does not fall on the town. He also mocked Winona State for being called the Warriors and having the color purple as their school color.

The audience at Winona State University was clearly impressed with Lynch’s performance, with many students saying they had not laughed that hard in a long time. 

“I loved seeing Drew Lynch! His set was very funny and I was so happy to see the disability representation,” Elise Lubben, a first-year student, said.

Overall, Drew Lynch’s performance at Winona State University was a memorable and enjoyable experience for all who attended. His unique style of humor and ability to connect and engage with the audience made for a truly unforgettable evening. It’s no surprise that he’s become one of the most popular comedians in the country.

“His story is so interesting,” Cases said. “When life throws curveballs at him, literally, he always picks himself up again.”