By Zoe Ekeh
Payton Burdette is a sophomore majoring in Broadcast and Digital Media and specializing in video production. He is the president of the Cedarville University improv comedy organization LOL.
LOL, which stands for Love To Laugh, was created 10 to 15 years ago and was originally known as DTR – Define The Relationship.
Hour-long shows are held once a month in the DMC’s recital hall. A host will introduce a show followed by different improv games that club members perform on the stage. The improv games are scenes performed as well as an added component to another game.
The LOL organization consists of 14 Cedarville students and meets once a week. The meetings involve practicing their improv skills.
Growing up, Burdette watched many comedy movies and specials. He was an introvert in seventh grade and decided to teach himself how to be comedic. His fascination with watching and observing comedians led him to grow out of his shell. Honing his comedic ability helped him socialize with others.
“My senior year of high school, I knew I was going to come here. So I looked through all the orgs and I saw that they have an improv. comedy org – and I was like, “oh that’d be really cool,” Burdette said.
“So then freshman year, I auditioned and got in,” Burdette said.
The role of president for the LOL Organization means that Burdette is in charge. The president, vice president, and treasurer of LOL sit down each week to plan and organize shows and practices. Ultimately the creative ideas for the organization’s productions are curated by Burdette.
“We always try to do something fun, each show,” Burdette said.
Every show, Burdette manages the live stream’s audio, music, and slide shows for shows. He enjoys engaging with org members on improv games and helping brainstorm ideas for shows with them as well.
The role and title of president for the LOL organization was something that the former president gave Burdette.
“Whoever is the president kinda gets to pick who the next president will be,” said Burdette.
The president tries to make sure that the next president is a sophomore or junior so that they can lead LOL for a while.
Anna Wallace, a senior Marketing major, is the treasurer of the LOL organization. She has been a part of LOL since she was a freshman at CU. She was offered the position of treasurer when she joined the organization, due to her knowledge of business.
“He has phenomenal leadership skills,” she says.
She describes Burdette as a person that is fun to work with and he is good with incorporating his and others’ ideas together.
She also explains how Burdette’s vision for the LOL organization is for it to be more professional and eventful. Ultimately Burdette enjoys putting on a show for the audience.
“The man knows how to get a crowd laughing. It’s so natural to him,” Wallace said.
Wallace is inspired by Burdette’s effort to improve and enhance his comedic talent. She believes that Burdette will leave an impact on the organization – as he is growing into his position as President, he is seen as the face of the organization.
Burdette has a YouTube channel, “Payton Burdette,” where he uploads comedy sketches. He had done an animated short film and mini-series of a news station that covered fake news stories. He wants to work in the entertainment industry in the future as a TV writer, and as well continue to work in comedy.
Zoe Ekeh is a junior Journalism major and writer for Cedars’ Arts and Entertainment section. An Ohio native born and raised in Dayton, Zoe has always loved music.
Image courtesy of Julia Mumford
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