On December 19 the Alumni Association welcomed Browning alumnus Sam Morril ’05 as the 2018 Class of 2000 Distinguished Speaker. Earlier in the year, the stand-up comedian, writer and actor debuted his one-hour stand-up special produced by Amy Schumer on Comedy Central entitled “Sam Morril: Positive Influence.” Alumni, parents, students, faculty and staff were treated to an intimate conversation with the comedian in the Kurani Gym, moderated by Mr. Morril’s former teacher and Dean of Faculty Michael Ingrisani.
The evening began with remarks from Head of School John Botti and Alumni Council President Andy Sandberg ’01, followed by a compilation of video clips from Mr. Morril’s stand-up work. Mr. Ingrisani and Mr. Morril were then welcomed to the stage for a candid conversation, and true to Mr. Morril’s style, no topic was off limits. The comedian, who has appeared on “The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon,” “Conan,” “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” “America’s Got Talent,” and more, shared the story of his first stand-up experience – his Form VI senior project at Browning. Mr. Morril took that experience at Browning and turned it into a career, working tirelessly to hone his skill and establish himself as a household name.
Throughout the interview, Mr. Morril had the audience rolling with laughter, sharing hilarious anecdotes from a terrible performance in Naples, Fla., to his mother’s reaction to much of his material. One of the evening’s few serious moments came when he discussed his teachers at Browning (including Mr. Ingrisani) who helped him find his voice and become the comedic storyteller he is today. Following the presentation, guests were treated to a cocktail reception in the Kurani Gym. Mr. Morril barely had a chance to grab an appetizer before he was surrounded by students, faculty, alumni and parents wanting to hear more. The Alumni Association extends its sincere gratitude to Mr. Morril and Mr. Ingrisani for making this event possible. A special thanks to the Class of 2000 for endowing the Distinguished Speaker Series, now in its 10th year.