B.J. Novak delights audience, SPB implements new ticketing system

| Staff Reporter

Social Programming Board handed out tickets yesterday in advance of comedian, writer and actor B.J. Novak’s comedy performance in Graham Chapel.

The new ticketing system was implemented in order to allow students to leave their positions in line and still get inside hours later and to prevent cutting, freshman and SPB Comedy Director Rachel Thornton said.

Comedian B.J. Novak performs to a nearly-full Graham Chapel on Wednesday night. Students lined up for hours before doors opened at 7 p.m. due to sellout crowds for Bo Burnham’s performance in the fall.Holly Ravazzolo | Student Life

Comedian B.J. Novak performs to a nearly-full Graham Chapel on Wednesday night. Students lined up for hours before doors opened at 7 p.m. due to sellout crowds for Bo Burnham’s performance in the fall.

Novak, who headlined this year’s SPB comedy show, is best known for his role on the Emmy Award-winning show “The Office,” and from movies like “Knocked Up” and “Inglorious Basterds.”

Novak started off the night sharing where some of the “The Office” cast members from St. Louis recommended him to go. One actress recommended Novak eat Imo’s Pizza.

“It’s St. Louis-style pizza. It’s so gross and good,” he recounted her saying.

During the two-hour show Novak shared anecdotes, read excerpts from his new book, shared one-liner jokes, brought out a hand puppet and took questions from the crowd.

Novak also revealed that he is planning a new show that he’d like former “Office” cast-mate Rainn Wilson to be a part of.

Novak shared mistakes from his Twitter, speaking of how he mistakenly posts what he’s meant to search because the search and post bars look similar.

“I have tweeted such things as: B.J. Novak, B.J. Novak funny, B.J. Novak not funny… and Miranda Cosgrove 18,” he said.

Novak also brought out Shy Puppet, a green frog hand puppet who Novak said he watches “The Muppet Show” with regularly. Novak called upon Shy Puppet to make a comment to the audience, but Shy Puppet was unable to speak.

Novak also spoke of his time filming “Inglorious Basterds” with Academy-Award winner Christoph Waltz.

“The characters [Waltz] plays are so extreme but often [those actors] who play those extreme character are the most warm in your life,” he said.

Novak used the last eight minutes of the show to answer audience questions. When asked what his favorite funny moment of “The Office” was, he told the audience of a moment in season six when Michael dresses up as Santa and Kevin sits on his lap early—crushing him.

Junior Matthew Herman, a member of K.A.R.L. Improv, opens for B.J. Novak on Wednesday evening. This marked the first time Social Programming Board had a student open for one of their biannual comedy shows.Holly Ravazzolo | Student Life

Junior Matthew Herman, a member of K.A.R.L. Improv, opens for B.J. Novak on Wednesday evening. This marked the first time Social Programming Board had a student open for one of their biannual comedy shows.

Junior Matthew Herman opened the show for Novak, which added a new student element to the show.

“I was absolutely thrilled with the show,” Thornton said. “We added two new elements to the show with Matt, the student opener, and the book signing. Both the book signing and Q&A gave the audience a chance to get to know the real B.J. Novak and not just the celebrity.”

Students who attended the event were pleased with all elements of the show.

“I had a great time,” sophomore Josh Rotker said. “I’m really happy SPB brought both [Herman and Novak] on stage.”