PENDLETON — Diverse life experiences have helped shape comedian Greg Warren’s style of standup humor.
The comic, who has appeared on Comedy Central, Late Night with Seth Myers, and is a regular on the Bob and Tom Show, will bring his unique talent to the stage of the Loran G. Skinner Auditorium at Pendleton Heights High School at 7 p.m. Sept. 16 to help raise funds for the wrestling program and the athletic department.
Warren is originally from St. Louis, where he was both a wrestler and played the clarinet in the band. He said this background allowed him to see high school from multiple points of view and helps fuel his stand-up routine.
“I traveled in a lot of different groups in high school, which I’m thankful for,” he said. “I had a lot of different groups of friends, and I still use it as a comedian.”
His most popular routine is the “Flute Man” character, which displays his background as both a “dumb jock” and a “band geek” to fully capture the insecurities of high school life.
He said that “Flute Man” will make an appearance during his routine at Pendleton Heights.
“Especially at something like this, I try to do anything that has anything to do with wrestling,” Warren said. “I try to talk about wrestling in a way that even people that don’t know anything about wrestling will still find humor in it.”
As a fan of Warren’s, Arabian wrestling coach Dave Cloud is looking forward to seeing Warren perform his “Flute Man” routine.
“Oh, if he doesn’t do that, he may not get out of here alive,” Cloud said. “Not only our athletes, but also members of our band are excited that he’s going to be here.”
Warren eventually studied journalism and was an All-American wrestler at the University of Missouri, but not before he left West Point after a year of demerits.
“I don’t even know why I went, looking back,” he said with a laugh. “I think I got wrapped up in the fact that a lot of kids in my high school were going to good schools on the east coast, and I felt like I wanted to compete with that in some way. I don’t think I ever desired to have a career in the military, and I figured that out after a year. It was a great experience, and I have a much greater appreciation of what our military does after that.”
Warren has performed at other wrestling benefits in the past and said he is eager to help at Pendleton Heights.
“I try to get fairly involved with what is going on,” Warren said. “I’ve done several, so I can see when they can work and raise money. It’s just fun being around wrestling people and talking with them.”
Cloud said the idea to bring Warren to Pendleton for this event came about after seeing Warren’s proclivity for wrestling program benefits on his webpage.
“I’ve always thought Greg Warren was hilarious, especially doing wrestling humor, which there isn’t a lot of that,” Cloud said. “I saw letters on his website where he had done benefits at other places. They said his comedy was appropriate, they had a lot of fun and raised a lot of money for the programs.”
Cloud said he’s grateful to athletic director Chad Smith for helping with the event. The proceeds will be divided evenly between the wrestling program and the athletic department.
“When someone buys a ticket, they are supporting all of Pendleton Heights athletes,” Cloud said. “I give (Smith) all the credit for being open to this idea.”
Crackers Comedy Club headliner Brent Terhune will be the opening act.
Posters and CDs will be available for purchase at the event, which Warren will be signing after the performance.
General admission tickets for the performance can be purchased in advance for $20 through the Pendleton Heights athletic office, on the website (www.gophhsathletics.com) or at Arabian home football games.