When the great Maddy Keavy and I decided to perform at Ground Zero, it was as much of a joke as Vermin Supreme running for President.
The shtick was simple: We’d ask the audience to call out a word, I would drop a beat, and Maddy would begin to rap lyrics adhering to the theme determined by our peers.
But when it came to hip hop music, neither one of us had the slightest idea on what made a good show. I learned how to beatbox after watching a YouTube video for four hours when I was in the 7th grade. Maddy freestyled when we’d have nights out with our girls. Our combined comedy experience amounted to making our parents laugh at the dinner table and cracking inappropriate jokes when we were with our friends.
So when we got on stage that Monday night in our coordinated sparkly blouses and backwards snapbacks claiming to be an “improv-comedy-rap-duo”, we didn’t expect applause, uproarious laughter, or an e-mail request for us to come back and perform at an actual USC event. But all of those things ended up happening.
While some of our performances have been huge hits, some of the things we’ve done have been complete flops. There was one time we delivered a few jokes on stage… and it was so quiet that someone’s hair could have fallen in the back of the room and we would have heard it hit the ground.
But our “improv-comedy-rap-duo” has saved us from the stress of freshmen year. Besides an abundance of extracurricular activities, our courseload, social life and transitioning into college as spring admits has been hectic, to say the least.
This “Maddy & Rini” gig, however, has provided us with the break we need from the routine of life. Maddy wants to be a top-notch journalist one day, and I’m still adamant about running for office after I finish up my undergraduate degree and law school. All of this tomfoolery, ultimately, has given us an opportunity to explore other sides of ourselves that aren’t so serious.
This isn’t to say that everyone who is struggling to adjust to campus life should get up on stage and do something crazy, but it certainly has helped us to take on any sort of risk. It’s made us even more bold and more confident about who we are. So, as “Maddy & Rini”, even if a few of our jokes or songs fall flat, looking back, at least we’ll have each other.