The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian

The news site of Evanston Township High School's student newspaper

The Evanstonian


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‘YAMO Frightfest’: Unafraid of laughter

Hilarious sketches, talented dancers and an efficient stagecrew make for a great YAMO
Frank Herman
YAMO cast alll together onstage at the end of the show

Since 1957, ETHS’s very own sketch comedy show, YAMO, has been pulling off jokes and laughs that stayed with its audience. This year’s YAMO isn’t the one to break this 66 year long chain. From sketches like “Hell Nah” to “Date Night At LeMonger,” YAMO 2023 popped off with a bang and a jump. 

The frighteningly funny student run production didn’t fail to deliver laughs and hilarious new sketches. Sure, there were a few hit-or-miss sketches, but altogether YAMO managed to pull together an outstanding show this time around. Actors, musicians, and crew all worked in sync to make a nearly perfect and mistake-free show. The spooky ambience of Halloween season was tapped into while producing YAMO 2023. The season and all of the scares associated with it worked their way into the sketches by theming them around traditions and just about anything Halloween associated. The opening was perfect, with the musicians and actors working together to grab the audience’s attention. The synchrony of the actors stomping loudly and the music becoming louder and faster in the beginning got everybody interested, and they followed up with a great opening number.

Jokes about outright bonkers conservative families from small towns, an exaggeration of the truly terrifying plague that is the Redwing Blackbirds, and the stupidity of white horror movie protagonists carried act one on their shoulders with out-of-pocket twists and turns that surprised the audience and had everyone laughing. The writers very clearly weren’t afraid to get lost in their own minds and jokes, and this actually ended up working well for a lot of sketches. Complete nonsensical writing carried the show through a lot of the not-so-absolutely hilarious sketches, and brought the show together well.

The dances captured the attention of the audience, and the dancers themselves performed without a hitch. They were a great representation of the talent found in everyone involved with YAMO. 

Crew was swift with the scene changes, making the show snappy and free of dull moments. Act one closed on an up with a great sketch and a quick transition into intermission and left me feeling happy with the show thus far.

Act two included some filler sketches, and fewer completely hilarious sketches. However, it was definitely more accessible and had a good amount of middle of the road sketches which felt more personalized to specific groups, personalities, or people present in the audience which was perfect as the night began to come to an end. The actors felt a bit tired, but having seen the show twice (once on the first Saturday and once on the last Thursday) I can confidently say that the actors slowing down actually improved some of the sketches. YAMO is always snappy, but taking a minute to breathe before the punchline improved the sketches altogether. 

The YAMOrchestra, however, never slowed down, and kept up a confident energy that carried the show in the background. The crew never rested either, and being in the front row I could see the speed and energy they had until the very end, working their very hardest to set the stage for the actors to shine. 

The closing act was exactly meta enough. It was personal, funny and most importantly with any kind of meta joke, not cringe. I was afraid that it might have ended up being dragged out like “The Greatest YAMO Sketch Ever Made” unfortunately ended up being, but it turned out to be a satisfying closure to the night. Broadway level talent from last year’s YAMO carried over and still shone through brightly during the show. New faces also shocked me with incredibly funny performances, and I found myself looking forward to seeing these actors hopefully go forward and become professional with their talent. I hope to see even more talent emerge during next year’s YAMO, and the new faces this time around educating those incoming actors on their craft. 

YAMO 2023 was a great show all-around and those involved worked their hardest to make it a success. Their dedication paid off in a show that left the audience filled with laughter. 

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About the Contributors
Ben Brown, Staff Writer
Colin Cummings, Staff Writer
Frank Herman, Social Chair
Howdy! I'm Frank Herman! As the Evanstonian's designated S103 coordinator, I'll always handle any questions, comments, or concerns you might have about our beloved backroom. I'm known in some circles for my strategic genius and will accept a challenge to any game. In my spare time, I'm the staff's resident history buff and Theodore Roosevelt enthusiast. I like a good conversation and a game of cards, and will always debate the intense social commentary of Louis Sachar's novel "Holes." Hope to meet you soon! <3
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