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Bill Hader hosts Q-and-A session with Ohio State audience

Courtesy of MCT

While Bill Hader’s character Stefon on “Saturday Night Live” usually picks out the hottest clubs in New York City, he might pick the Varsity Club when visiting Columbus.

“I think he would just hang out at the Varsity Club. He would take over the Varsity Club and make it a vomit factory,” Hader said in an interview with The Lantern. “He would play throw-up music. He would just fill it full of broken glass.”

Hader spoke to around 1,200 students Monday night in the Mershon Auditorium during an Ohio Union Activities Board-sponsored event. The event was in Q-and-A format, with theater professor Nicholas Dekker moderating the first half and students asking questions for the remainder.

Hader has been a cast member of “SNL” since 2005 and was nominated for Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series in 2012 for his work on the show. Hader has also starred in “Adventureland,” “Superbad” and “Men in Black 3.”

Hader quickly attracted the attention of the audience when he yelled “O-H” at the beginning of the event. Alarmed by the loud audience response, Hader instantly said “F—,” and compared the response to the reaction of a cougar after touching it.

During the event, Hader gave students a sample of his many impressions, including Al Pacino, Lorne Michaels and Peter Falk, and even brought out his Stefon voice. Hader said that some of his favorite “SNL” hosts include Justin Timberlake, Jon Hamm and Martin Short.

“I was totally starstruck,” Hader said of Short hosting “SNL.” “He’s like the funniest guy in the world.”

One student asked about the process of writing sketches and brainstorming ideas for “SNL.”

“It’s like being with your friends just f—–g around. You just have to be loose and not think too much,” Hader said. “It’s a very organic process and I learned to not over analyze it too much.”

Megan Lyon, comedy chair for OUAB said bringing Hader to campus was an obvious choice.

“Bill Hader was a popular selection among students and OUAB’s Comedy Committee was also very passionate and excited about the opportunity to bring a well-known comedian to Ohio State,” Lyon said in an email.

Adam Lichtcsien, a third-year in anthropology, said he enjoyed the show but was surprised by the setup of the event.

“I showed up thinking it was going to be a comedy event, but I was really pleased with the way they did it,” Lichtcsien said. “You can tell he’s a really nice guy, he’s very professional and yet he remains joke-y. The fact that he was able to spin it into a comedy just as a forum was really great.”

Anahita Ameri, a third-year in mechanical engineering, is a member of Fishbowl Improv and loved hearing advice from Hader about making it to “SNL” and the audition process.

“Since like the Ashlee Simpson debacle in 2004, I wanted to be on ‘Saturday Night Live,'” Ameri said. “That advice, even though it was very subtle, when I heard it I was like ‘this is great.'”

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