WHAT THE F? Donald Glover Headlines Comedy Event

Rebekah Hwang/Guardian

Donald Glover, who performed at the Sun God Festival last year, will be back on campus next month to headline the Winter Triton Festival comedy event.

“Donald Glover was our first choice,” AVP of Concerts and Events Brian Wong said. “It just worked out perfectly. He got such a great response at Sun God. We really wanted him back.”

He will be joined at the festival by comedian Dat Phan, a San Diego native who won the first season of NBC’s “Last Comic Standing.”

The festival — currently scheduled for Feb. 5 in the Price Center West Ballroom — will be free to students, who can get up to two wristbands with a valid UCSD ID at the UCSD box office.

Although a ticket will be required, it does not guarantee entry to ensure that the ballroom is at maximum capacity. As a result, the show will be oversold. Those who cannot get into the main venue may be able to watch a live feed of the show at the Loft.

“It’s called ‘festival’ because we also have [programming at] the Loft on that night,” Wong said in an e-mail. “Currently, [it’s] an overflow for the ballroom. We are looking into a live feed so people who couldn’t get into the ballroom can still enjoy the show.”

The event is designed to be an annual complement to FallFest and Sun God Festival. This is the first year of the festival, which is funded by A.S. Council’s mandated reserves that is composed of unused fees from past students. According to Vice President of Student Life Kristina Pham, if the event is successful and continues beyond this year, organizers will need to find a new source of funding.

WTF will not, unlike the Sun God Festival, feature student organizations or vendors. Artist merchandise will be available for purchase.

The show represents a shift on the part of the A.S. Concerts and Events office, as the majority of the shows it puts on are concerts. Pham said that other shows were considered, but the council decided a comedy show would be a good event for Winter Quarter. Pham also expressed enthusiasm for the comedians that signed on for the show.

For the past several years, Winter Quarter has lacked the major social events that mark the other academic quarters. Previously, WinterFest provided a large-scale show in Winter Quarter, but was discontinued three years due to poor attendance.

Since his appearance at the Sun God Festival in 2010, Glover has been busy. His TV show, NBC’s “Community,” was picked up for a second season, and he received the Rising Comedy Star Award at the Just for Laughs Festival this past summer.

Dat Phan — who grew up in the San Diego suburbs about 20 miles from UCSD — rose to prominence in 2003 when he won “Last Comic Standing” and has released a DVD and a CD of his material.

“It is nice to come home after a busy tour to make everyone laugh,” Phan said. “I really look forward to this upcoming show.”

Students are excited about the comedians as well.

“I really like Dat Phan, what I’ve seen of his act is hilarious,” Warren College senior Steven Kennedy said.

Students expressed support for the idea of a comedy show rather than another concert. Others, who also wished to remain anonymous, felt that given the current state of the school’s budget, the event is needless and a waste of money.

While current student fees do not fund the festival — which costs $31,980 — some students felt that the money could still be better spent elsewhere.

The Concerts and Events office plans on employing the same marketing techniques use for FallFest and Sun God Festival, which include posters, writing on chalkboards and using social networking websites to generate buzz.