A class at CU Boulder is combining two unlikely topics – comedy and climate change.
The two topics are combined as part of ‘Comedy for Climate Change’ – a video competition and project which organizers say is a creative way to tell stories and communicate about climate change.
The competitions comes to fruition on St. Patrick’s Day, as a performance that organizers call a comedy variety show.
This is the competition’s second year. Last year, submissions came in from five different countries and ranged in everything from a spoof on a Simon and Garfunkel music video, to a fake newscast featuring a flustered weather person.
Max Boykoff and Beth Osnes, who are both professors at CU, say using comedy to highlight real world issues is a practice that goes back thousands of years.
“I would say we have a long history of performance that takes on a lot of serious and consequential issues through comedy, we have a long history of this going back to the ancient Greeks … often times to create comedy you have to be smarter, you have to be more clever, and you are usually introducing some preposterous idea as a solution, and these preposterous ideas we need some of those right now.” Beth Osnes, CU
The students and others who participate, typically have a lot of experience with researching climate change. The competition is part of a hybrid Theater/Environmental studies course at the University of Colorado Boulder, but it also is open to people around the world. Last year, people from five countries entered into the competition.
“In last year’s competition, we got entries from around the world, from a number of different countries and a number of different political contexts and so we are really excited to see what we bring in this year, it’s going to be great.” Max Boykoff, CU
Here are some of last year's winners: