Public Offenders team up with LCC for scholarships

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Entrance to Dart Auditorium, LCC

By Andrew Kelleher
Lansing Star staff writer

The performing arts department at Lansing Community College teamed up with The Public Offenders comedy group in an effort to raise money for theatre scholarships, Friday, Feb. 11. It was able to raise $320 from an audience of 64 people at $5 a ticket.

The Public Offenders consists of eight LCC alumni: Tom Slovinski, Denny Green, Mike Evitts, Jake Zamonski, Dan Currie, Matt Clark, Ivan Wolfgang and Zak Engeland. The group was formed in September of ’09, but really started to take shape in the summer of 2010 with key additions to the group.

Zak Engeland, performing on stage Dart Auditorium, LCC

Slovinski, one of the original members and a ’06 graduate of LCC, described the groups style as, “dark, twisted and very sardonic.” Their comedy is intelligent banter with R-rated references, shooting for a target audience of age 16 and up. Audience member Emily Minnema, a freshman at MSU, said, “I really enjoyed the show. Their comedy is really clever and relevant for college students in particular.”

This was the first time The Public Offenders put on a show at LCC. They usually perform at Connxtion’s Comedy Club in Lansing along with various rock venues in mid-Michigan.

Tom Slovinski

When asked why the group dedicated a night to perform pro bono to raise scholarship money, Slovinski said, “we are doing it just to give back and kind of just show that there is a lot of talented people that have come out of Lansing through LCC.” After Friday night they definitely proved it to the 64 people in attendance. The laughter was evidence of that.

The money raised brings the theater department one step closer to providing another student with a scholarship. The school offers two opportunities every year for students to audition and win the scholarships, once during the first semester and then again during the third semester. Melissa Kaplan, production coordinator for the performing arts department at LCC, said “every bit of money helps, we always welcome donations. But, a big way that people can help is actually to come to a performance, we love an audience.”

You can see all upcoming events for the LCC performing arts department on their webpage. It is definitely worth checking out if you don’t have anything going on or are looking for a cheap date. For more information about the performing arts department at LCC, contact Melissa Kaplan at Kaplanm@lcc.edu.

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