A few times a year, Pitt Program Council organizes lectures for the student body. Past lecturers included Josh Radnor (Ted from How I Met Your Mother), Matthew Perry (Chandler from Friends), and Hines Ward (former Steelers player). The most recent lecture took place on April 1st and featured Eric Stonestreet, otherwise known as Cam Tucker, from the award winning comedy Modern Family.
I was lucky enough to attend and I’m sure everybody who was there would agree that it was definitely a night to remember. Usually, the speakers talk about a specific topic or experience and then allow questions at the end, but Eric’s whole lecture was a question and answer session, making it stand out from the rest. He said at the beginning that this was for us, not for him, so he was going to be completely open and honest. In case you missed it, here’s a review of what happened and some of the information he shared!
- A girl, who mentioned she got a selfie with Aaron Paul when he was on campus, asked Eric to take a selfie with her. He immediately invited her up to the stage, proceeding to take multiple pictures with her!
- He sang happy birthday to a girl in the audience.
- Eric gave encouraging advice to an aspiring actor, saying that he is doing the right thing by staying in school, getting experience in plays, and failing while it’s still okay, rather than failing in Hollywood. He joked around and said something like, “Hollywood will always be there… unless we have another earthquake…”
- He shared with us a few of his favorite moments while filming Modern Family. Obviously, his favorite episode to film was the “Fizbo” episode from the first season. Eric said that as a child he wanted to be a clown, so ABC incorporated that into a few episodes in the series. He also loved filming the scene when he and Mitch (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) locked Lilly (Aubrey Anderson-Emmons) in the car.
- He is a Kansas native and attended Kansas State University. He studied sociology and criminal justice, with aspirations to become a prison warden.
- He used to act in plays and also studied improv at The Second City Training Center in Chicago, where Tina Fey was his teacher. Lucky him!
- Ellen drives by his house on her way to work.
- For twelve years, he played several different roles in television shows, movies, and did many commercials. In those twelve years, the longest job he had lasted just eight days, until he got the role of Cam.
- When asked which cast member he is closest to, he said Jesse Tyler Ferguson since they have so many scenes together, but he is also very close with Sofia Vergara, who plays Gloria.
- And lastly, my favorite part of the night: Earlier that day, Eric was at Primanti’s and posted a picture of his sandwich on Instagram with the caption, “Who out there wants the other half of my Primanti’s sandwich?” A guy, who saw that picture, raised his hand and asked Eric if he could have the other half and, without hesitation, Eric asked his personal assistant to go get the rest of his sandwich. His assistant came back minutes later and hand-delivered it to this lucky guy. Eric also gave him one of his water bottles. The room was, without a doubt, filled with envy!
This was a night full of many laughs. He is hilarious and throughout the whole night he cracked jokes and made witty comments. He was very engaging and not only answered the questions that students asked, but started conversations with the students. It was very interactive, personal, comical, and memorable. He was so comfortable on the stage and seemed to really love interacting with the audience. Overall, I give this lecture an A+! Great job to the Pitt Program Council for picking such an amazing speaker!
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