Singing comedian Brian O’Sullivan warms the Student Union Theatre

Brian O'Sullivan performed in the Student Union Theatre at the University of Connecticut on Wed., March 22. The show was a free show put on by SUBOG. (Jason Jiang/The Daily Campus)

Guitar-playing comedian Brian O’Sullivan from Los Angeles, California kept the University of Connecticut audience warm with his high energy performance that engaged those in attendance with parodies and original songs.

The free SUBOG comedy shows at UConn tend to generate smaller audiences during the weekdays, but this was no issue for O’Sulivan, with his fun-loving ‘This is my show, we are doing what I want’ attitude, which didn’t fail to warm up the audience while he tested the water with songs from his beautiful sunburst guitar decorated by worn cue cards taped to the backside.

Feeding off of positive and progressive feedback, O’Sullivan would pull well-timed 180s with his attitude into a faux frustrated mood, which always got a laugh. Part way into the show he asked, “You guys wanna hear some jokes?” the audience cheered in response to be rebutted by “What the hell do you think I’ve been doing up here the whole time then? Jeez!”

O’Sullivan had a wide range of bits that were all relatable to the average American college student. He did parody versions of mostly top artists from the past few years, like Justin Bieber’s "Love Yourself," which was adapted to a song about how much he hates Bieber and how catchy his songs often are. One of the hardest hitting lines of the song was, “I’m quoting my mother on this one and she says Justin should go f*** himself.”

The California comedian did other adaptations, like his own twisted version of Iggy Azalea’s "Fancy," where the entire song was made up of puns formulated from a strange obsession with Monopoly. His physical comedy incorporated with the bits he did without the guitar really sold the more pun-oriented, dorky vibe the comedian was trying to give off.

“I try to keep a dorky demeanor on stage so people don’t take me so seriously. Sometimes people need to be reminded that they are watching a comedy show,” O’Sullivan commented with a smile.

“My favorite part of the show was the mad libs song. I was definitely laughing the hardest during that whole bit!” second-semester biology major Miranda Edwards said.

O’Sullivan’s most popular bit felt like a lull in the show at first. He sat down and got out a pen and paper and encouraged the audience help him write a song mad libs style by asking the audience for certain types of words. They were then culminated into a hilarious, audience-written parody version of "Mad World" by Tears for Fears.

“I loved how comfortably he interacted with the audience, especially for the mad libs bit. It really added a deeper layer to his show that made it more memorable,” reflected fourth-semester digital media and design student Nick Bartos.

Brian O’Sullivan has been to over 300 colleges around the country and has been touring for the past eight years performing his singing comedy routine. He grew up in L.A. and wanted to be a comedic actor from a very young age.

“When I was seven I basically just wanted to be Jim Carry. So I went to school to be an actor but it didn’t quite work out,” O’Sullivan said. “I started doing some stand up and this musical comedy thing initially just to entertain my friends but they loved it so much that I ended up running with it.”

O’Sullivan draws most of his comedy/music inspirations from rappers and parody artists like Weird Al, Eminem, Bloodhound Gang and Steve Lynch.

“I try to emulate a lot of these rap artists works from the early 2000’s. So much of the rappers lyrics from this time are so layered with jokes, puns and idioms that you have to listen to them several times before you can pick apart how complex a single line is.”

You can see O’Sullivan’s tour information and much more at his website, BOcomedy.com


Dan Wood is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at daniel.wood@uconn.edu.