Arvin Mitchell entertains during college tour

Entertaining others was not always the number one priority in a young Arvin Mitchell’s life. After attending North County Tech in St. Louis, Mitchell had dreams of being an architect.  However, he soon changed his mind and aspired to become a police officer.

Eventually, Mitchell found that his happiness came from seeing other people’s happiness and making them laugh and smile. It was this laughter that he kept coming back to.

“I tried attending school a couple times but I would be so booked with performances that I became too busy. Eventually, I would love to go back to school to get my business degree while I work,” Mitchell said. “I really admire education. That’s why I love coming to college campuses. I commend all of you for pursuing your education. I know how much discipline it takes to stay in school and keep focused on your goals.”

Mitchell is currently the most-booked comedian in the college circuit and is currently on tour, visiting various campuses in the Midwest. Mitchell came to Central Michigan University and performed at the UC Auditorium on Oct. 25.

Coming from St. Louis, Mo., where he was born and raised, Mitchell has branched out, covering several states in the U.S. as well as Jamaica where he spent his time visiting with young children at their schools. He has also performed in Germany and would eventually like to go to Africa and China as well.

After becoming a well-known comedian after performing on BET’s hit reality show “Coming to the Stage” in 2003, Mitchell has since engaged in various performances for college campus and other corporate functions including the premiere of The Longest Yard in St. Louis, The Kentucky Derby Grand Gala Reception, and two other gospel plays.

“My favorite part about performing is just being able to make people laugh”, Mitchell said. “I have seen people so unhappy and all it took was laughter to make things better. I love being that person who can help people overcome their obstacles through happiness.”

Mitchell also comments on the difficulties he has come across in his performances.

“As much as I love seeing people enjoy themselves, there are always those people who come to a show bringing in that negative energy.”

It was not until Mitchell received wise words from veteran comedian Kenny Howell, who told him to, “Focus on people who are laughing and forget the rest.”

After following Howell’s advice, Mitchell has since been able to overcome some of the anxieties he used to have before performances worrying about the negative people in the crowd.

Monday night’s show included several students, nearly filling the entire auditorium with uproarious laughter from beginning to end.

Secondary education major Ashley Nysowy loved Mitchell’s performance.

“My favorite part was his interaction with the audience. I have seen some comedians and they don’t always do that,” Nysowy said.

Those who have seen Mitchell perform before like information technology major Josh Martin also enjoyed himself.

“He was able to keep the entertainment at an even level throughout the entire show,” Martin said. “I would definitely see him perform again.”

Mitchell covered a wide variety of material Monday night ranging from family, social issues and even on-the-spot topics, putting a humorous spin on everything he said.

“I really just love the spontaneity of entertaining. I love picking a person out of a crowd and making a joke. Sometimes when you have prepared material it can limit you a bit and you may feel restricted to only use that, but it’s usually the unexpected stuff that makes for the best jokes,” Mitchell said.