UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – The Mohawk Valley Community College (MVCC) holds a Cultural Series every year that aims to bring a variety of lectures, concerts, comedy, and more to both students, and the surrounding communities of Utica and Rome.

And coming up this Thursday at 7 PM, actor and stand-up comedian, Jay Pharoah, will take the stage at MVCC’s Schafer Theater.

“You get everything,” explained Pharoah, “I got a buffet of comedy I talk about, so it’s gonna be the best Golden Corral you’ve ever been to in your life.”

“The cleanest Golden Corral you’ve ever been to in your life, let me just tell you that,” joked Pharoah.

Jay Pharoah spent six seasons as a cast member on NBC’s, Saturday Night Live, and is extremely well known for his impressions of celebrities like Will Smith, Denzel Washington, Kanye West, and even former President Barack Obama.

Pharoah has amassed over 4.9 million “likes” on TikTok, which he thinks is primarily thanks to these impression videos, but Jay explained to me that there’s much more to his comedic career than just impressions, and this show is one way to establish that.

“This is a view of Jared Pharoah and not just Jay Pharoah,” he said, “And how does it differ from years and previous tours? I’m older, I’ve been through more things, I look at the world differently.”

“I can’t wait for people to see this new comedian that’s on stage because it ain’t the old one.”

Pharoah has appeared in movies like Stephen Soderbergh’s “Unsane,” “Ride Along” with Kevin Hart, and the animated movie, “Sing,” and he has also voiced several animated series like “Family Guy,” “The Simpsons,” and “Bojack Horseman.”

But Jay isn’t slowing down and has a bunch of new projects in the works that we can expect to see very soon.

“You know, I just had a movie that dropped on Comedy Central and Paramount Plus called “Out of Office” starring Ken Jeong, the lovely Leslie Jones, Milana Vayntrub, Elaine Caroll, Chris Gethard, Chris Smith – we’re all the workplace friends, and it’s a beautiful movie,” he said.

“And I got a couple more movies dropping,” he continued, “I worked with Anderson Paak, H.E.R., Ice Cube, and Meryl Streep, so that movie’s coming out as well.”

“I don’t know if it’s coming out at Christmas, or past that, but if it’s past that, then that’s okay.”

But before Jay gets back to the big screen, he has a show to do, right in downtown Utica.

“This show that I’m doing at Mohawk Valley is definitely going to be a PG show,” he said. “So, I got a good hour, and usually after that it might get a little X-Rated.”

“Comedy is just the best way for people to break away, so if I can make you forget about your problems for a little bit of time, I’ve done my job as a comedian, and I’ve fulfilled my purpose as a human being on this earth.”

General admission tickets cost $25 to the public, $15 for MVCC employees, and are free for MVCC students. Anyone interested in attending can purchase tickets at www.mvcc.edu/tickets.

“Tickets are still available at www.mvcc.edu/tickets, but we do expect this show to sell out,” said Bill Dustin, MVCC’s Director of Events and Guest Services. “We are urging the community to get their tickets in advance.”