Who is comedian and actress Jessica Williams? She was a correspondent at The Daily Show from 2012 to 2016. She’s set to appear in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them sequel next November 2018. And she is coming to Cahn Auditorium this Nov. 12 as A&O’s fall speaker.
Although her old boss, Trevor Noah, visited campus recently for a New York Times discussion on race, Williams’ visit to Northwestern will likely be far less serious. A&O’s press release bills the event as a “stand-up comedy show.” A&O is sponsoring Williams in partnership with College Feminists, One Book One Northwestern and the Multicultural Filmmakers’ Collective.
Williams gets regular practice doing stand-up on her podcast, 2 Dope Queens, which she co-hosts with fellow comedian Phoebe Robinson. The program involves discussions about “sex, romance, race, hair journeys, living in New York, and Billy Joel. Plus a whole bunch of other s**t,” according to its website. The fourth season came out in September, with a starry slate of guests including former A&O fall speaker Abbi Jacobson.
“We are bringing Jessica specifically because we think that her popularity will only grow over the the next year or so, and she is hilarious,” said A&O Speakers Chair Kelly Eisenholtz via email.
Eisenholtz cited Williams’ work on The Daily Show, 2 Dope Queens and her most recent film The Incredible Jessica James as evidence of her popularity. She also noted that Williams will bring more than just laughs to Cahn.
“Not only is her resume extremely impressive, but as an African American woman thriving in entertainment, she has a lot to say regarding her experience in the industry,” Eisenholtz wrote. “This show serves A&O Speakers’ purpose because Jessica will not only entertain students, but she also has many important things to say regarding politics and the world of entertainment.”
Northwestern students can decide for themselves on Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. Tickets will be available at the Norris Box Office website for $5, and doors will open at 6 p.m.