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Cancellation leaves audience confused then entertained

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The stage at Hoag Hall nearly looked empty until Troy Baxley stepped in on short notice. Photo from funnybonecentral.com.
CSU-Pueblo students gathered at Hoag Hall, Wednesday, Sept. 5 for what they thought was going to be a comedic performance by Adam Norwest.

However as Troy Baxley ended his performance and left the stage there were confused murmurs from the crowd as to who was supposed to be performing.

“Troy Baxley took the place of Adam Norwest after we learned that he had a medical issue that prevented his ability to perform,” said Patricia Witkowsky, director of student development for CSU-Pueblo.

According to Witkowsky, Baxley “came to campus, from Denver, with only two and a half hours notice.”

This was all done on short notice as Witkowsky only learned of Norwest’s inability to perform “four hours before his performance,” Witkowsky said. “I am not sure if Adam will be performing at CSU-Pueblo in the future.”

Baxley, Norwest’s impromptu replacement, is not unfamiliar to the comedy scene. According to his website, www.troybaxley.com, Baxley is a two time “national finalist at the prestigious HBO Comedy Festival.” Baxley is described as being “well-known in comedy circles.”

Comedian Garret Waller was Baxley’s opening act and primed the crowd. Waller accosted variety of subjects ranging from his weight to salads, religion, drugs, and squirrels. Waller even went so far as to greet each member of the audience that arrived to the performance late, riling laughter those who were punctual.

As Waller introduced Baxley as the evening’s main performance some of the crowd appeared to be confused. Despite the confusion, Baxley was greeted warmly by the crowd when he came on stage. Baxley introduced himself and greeted the crowd with the advice that they should “let the laughter out,” telling the front row that they needed to relax.

Jokes about the missing pieces of the walls in Hoag Hall were a crowd favorite, drawing laughter as he made fun of the venue throughout his performance. Hoag Hall wasn’t Baxley’s only topic. Baxly discussed subjects ranging from his girlfriend’s beautiful jacked up buck teeth to Snuggies.

Other topics discussed by Baxley included crayon colors, the town of Fountain, Colo., his dog, and the don’t mess with Texas attitude he said most Texans have.

The crowd was also fair game during Baxley’s performance. Baxley continually jested with a member of the audience wearing a shirt with “Bazinga!” printed on it. Interrupting his act, Baxley continued to draw the attention of members of the audience as they coughed, spouting out “lozenge” anytime this occurred.

Baxley’s style is described as “impish” by his website and the crowd was often unsure of the direction that he was taking the show. The performance was filled with prolonged silences when jokes were not understood. Baxley then took this opportunity to walk the crowd through his jokes, deconstructing them, and then moving on once the audience started laughing again.

During the show, Baxley said he prided himself on his use of puns. Making the joke he once met a retired Ultimate Fighting Championship athlete at a furniture store who put him in an “armoire.”