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Rob O'Reilly, Derek Hughes featured in Winter Carnival Comedy Show

RELEASED: Feb. 12, 2010

Derek Hughes and Rob O'Reilly
Comedians Derek Hughes (top) and Rob O'Reilly will be featured at the Winter Carnival Comedy Show.

EAU CLAIRE — Comedians Rob O'Reilly and Derek Hughes will be featured at the Winter Carnival Comedy Show — "Shiver, Shake and Laugh 'til Your Belly Aches" — Feb. 19 at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Doors open at 8:30 p.m. for the 9 p.m. show at Higherground, the club in Crest Wellness Center. Admission is free.

With appearances on Comedy Central's "Live at Gotham" and NBC's "The Tonight Show" as Jay Leno's correspondent, 25-year-old Rob O'Reilly is an up-and-coming comedian based in New York. He made his standup debut at a high-school talent show in Cleveland, Ohio, and later won the city's largest comedy competition. While attending Boston University on an academic scholarship, he became a finalist in the 2005 Boston Comedy Festival. A favorite at three NACA (National Association for Campus Activities) conferences, he headlines shows at colleges across the country. His first comedy album, "Strip Solitaire," made its debut on iTunes in 2008. He also enjoys playing in a comedian basketball league and performing sketch comedy with his group, The Straightmen.

Comedian and magician Derek Hughes studied acting at the University of Minnesota. In 1997 he and his collaborator were awarded first place in stage magic by the International Brotherhood of Magicians for their performance, "Express Train." In 2001 HBO invited Hughes to perform his unique blend of comedy and magic at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colo.

City Pages has praised Hughes' gift for "creating shows like beautiful crazy quilts sewing together sleight of hand, humor, philosophy, storytelling and straight acting with his sharp theatrical instincts." The New York Times called Hughes "thoroughly entertaining," and Time Out New York honored him with its "Critic's Pick" for the off-Broadway production of his original one-man show, "Necromance: A Night of Conjuration."

When in Minneapolis Hughes frequently performs at the Acme Comedy Club, and he has written and performed original one-person plays including "Frankenstein" (Hennepin Center for the Arts) and "Dreams" (Jungle Theater). His most recent show, "Magic Exists," was staged by Dixon Place in New York City.

Hughes was a head writer and cast member on MTV's "Room 401"; and on the VH1 series "Celebracadabra" he was one of the noteworthy magicians transforming celebrities into masters of magic.

The Winter Carnival Comedy Show is sponsored by the University Activities Commission of the Student Senate.

-30-

JS/DW

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