Listen and laugh as Zoe Green takes the stage

Listen and laugh as Zoe Green takes the stage

New to comedy and to college, the Syracuse University freshman brings her jokes to the Comedy Carnival.

Zoe Green on the Goldstein Auditorium stage for the Orange After Dark Comedy Carnival hosted by the University Union on Friday night.
Troy Connor
Zoe Green on stage at the Orange After Dark Comedy Carnival hosted by the University Union on Friday night.

When Zoe Green filled out the “call for comedians” form a month ago, she did it as a joke. She didn’t expect to get the gig or envision being on stage alongside other Syracuse University comedians. 

The 18-year-old performed standup – her third audience-official time – at the University Union and Orange After Dark Comedy Carnival on Friday in the Goldstein Auditorium. 

Green arrived on stage wearing jeans, a white T-shirt that said “Legalize Tax Evasion” and a handful of notes.

“I’m here to prove that women can be funny,” she said after introducing herself to the crowd.

The freshman from Los Angeles tried standup comedy for the first time last fall. Her debut performance was at The Playground, a student-run show in the basement of an off-campus house, where she realized her jokes could land with an audience. She has performed at The Playground twice. 

“I wasn’t funny until I got to college,” Green said. She credits her friends for urging her to share her stories with an audience other than them. 

“My friends all say ‘You’re the funniest person we know,’” Green said. “I feel like I’ve lived 50 million lives … and I feel like those lives lead to a lot of interesting experiences and stories.” 

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Troy Connor
Zoe Green performs stand-up comedy in the Goldstein Auditorium on Friday.

Green says she tends to pull inspiration from both her favorite comedian, John Mulaney, and her YouTube shorts feed. However, her content mainly comes from personal experiences and unusual opinions.  

“I take my embarrassing moments and just make light of them,” Green said. 

Every time she thinks of a joke, Green writes it in her notes app and then chooses which punchlines work best to connect with a personal story. This show specifically came together through the setups in her notes app and a lot of procrastination.

In her Lawrinson Hall dorm room a few hours before the show, Green listened to “Big Bootie Mix, Volume 24,” did her makeup, got dressed and started practicing in front of the mirror.

“I hate hate practicing in front of people, I don’t know why it gets me so nervous,” said Green. 

Green played off her identity as a freshman on Friday, but admitted that it was nerve-wracking to be the youngest in the group. She hopes to improve her comedy as she grows and embrace new opportunities as they come. 

“I have all four years ahead of me to experiment and do new things. Why not try it?”