Kevin Hart cracks up The Nest
The Florida Gulf Coast University Programming Board took a different route for Nest Fest this year. Instead of a musician, it brought a comedian to the stage. This was no small-town stand-up comedy show. The performer was Kevin Hart, a comedian who was named Entertainer of the Year by the American National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Image Awards in 2014.
A standing ovation filled Germain Arena as the audience welcomed Hart on stage.
More than 6,500 people, FGCU students and the general public, were laughing to tears as Hart, one of today’s most popular comedians, kicked off his “What Now” tour at FGCU’s Nest Fest Friday night at Germain Arena.
Peter Domanski, a senior FGCU student, said he has been watching Hart’s previous shows and was excited to see him live.
“I was looking forward to see what new jokes he’s got for this show, so I got my ticket way in advance,” he said.
Tickets for the show were sold out soon after they went on sale.
Freshmen Alana Dellamonica and Briana Gayle bought their tickets as soon as they were available.
“They were sold out fast,” Gayle said. “Good thing we got them when they went on sale.”
To warm up the audience’s laughing muscles and lead up to what everybody has been waiting for, Hart had three openers: Joey Well, Will “Spank” Horton and Ni’Am Lynn.
Stories were touching all sorts of topics, from race-related stereotypes, to
college life, to relationship problems, to working out and, of course, it wouldn’t be stand-up comedy without the sexual stories.
After Lynn, it was Hart’s turn to wow the audience. And without a doubt, he did. His stories were inspired by his kids, family and soon-to-be-married life, which he first brought up as, “Yep! I’m doin’ it all … over again. One more time.”
He also shared stories from quite a few “bull***t” situations he claims he tends to find himself in often, such as his first visit to Starbucks with the hope of getting a vanilla latte. However, it wasn’t as simple as he thought and ended with him leaving empty-handed.
The satisfied crowd stood up one more time to applaud his performance as he made his way off the stage and on to his next stop for the tour. According to Billboard, Hart’s “What Now” tour might become the biggest comedy tour in history with almost 70 locations planned nationwide.
Fort Myers was the first city where he used new material, but it came with a price for the audience. Hart prohibited the use of cell phones during the show.
To enforce this, Germain Arena tripled its security with its own staff, a private security company and the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.
The audience didn’t take the bad news too well because they were all excited to tweet, text and snap pictures of the show.
Danny Palacia, a freshman at FGCU, would have loved to take pictures but understood the importance of keeping the content behind closed doors.
“It’s unfortunate, but he has a good reason for it,” he said.
Despite that strict and enforced rule, the show was an absolute success.
“It was awesome,” Domanski said after the show. “Totally worth it.”