On Thursday evening,“The Sitdown with EmEz'' show had the chance to chat with Brooklyn born, Haitian-American comedian & actor, Vlad Calixte who is also known as Haitian V and Just Vlad to discuss how he got his comedic start. Vlad also gave us some insight on what we should expect next with his overall creative career. With his sporadic bursts of speaking in Haitian Creole to EmEz, Vlad informed the audience how his popularity began with skits on IG, then by MCing weddings, and even baby showers! I bet the mothers-to-be prayed not to go into labor after laughing at his jokes so hard...Vlad is JUST that funny!
Surprisingly, Vlad began his comedy career in church, and then was asked by his Pastor to MC his daughter’s wedding. After that, he began getting booked to MC weddings more often. “It started snowballing while I was still building myself as a comedian, as Haitian V...and people started rocking out with it. I would MC one wedding, then I would get booked at that particular wedding for another wedding, and then it took off from there,” he stated.
Vlad is also known for his uniquely creative Halloween costumes, and when asked if he is going to do another big Halloween costume this year, he stated, “I have been fighting myself about it. Should I, should I not? I am prepared and I definitely have a super idea that is ready to fly, & although this is not my best one yet, I don’t know if I should waste something so spectacular on 2020. There are too many restrictions and it doesn't seem as fun anymore.” I am sure we can all relate to how he feels.
Vlad began creating these hilarious costume ideas while he was working with celebrity videographer/photographer, Johnny Nunez who was his boss for a couple of years. Johnny would invite Vlad to celebrity parties, and one Halloween he told him he had to dress up for the clients. His costume as Fonzworth actually caught Puffy’s eye at one one the parties he attended and ended up making it on the news as well as MTV; from that moment on, Vlad knew he had to keep pushing with his career in comedy.
In 2013, Vlad started a popular series on IG entitled, “Finish That Song,” where he would ask random celebrities to finish the lyrics of a popular song. He says that came about because he is a huge music fan and listens to every genre in every era, and since he used to play this game with his friends, “I said to myself, let me flesh out the brand a bit more, and give people something to look forward to.” As that built momentum, he began to include it in a weekly agenda on his social media that would include that interactive game, skits, and/or whatever else he felt was adequate for him to help bring awareness to his comedic brand. When EmEz asked him what gave him the courage to approach celebrities for this game, Vlad says he began with some Haitian artists and took it from there.
So, what's next for Just Vlad? He says to look out for more “Finish That Song,” segments, putting out more merchandise, shooting for two projects; one being a feature film he booked during the quarantine where he plays a Haitian version of Muhammad Ali’s hypeman/cornerman. As well as his version of “Taxicab Confessions,” &“Just Vlad Stories,” where he shares stories when he was working with Johnny Nunez.
Before ending the interview, EmEz asked a very important question of why Vlad changed his name from Haitian V to Just Vlad. Vlad so eloquently stated, “being famous is not my goal, I am Just Vlad,” and he wants to be addressed as such, not as the characters he plays in his skits.
What a wonderful example of a person who is truly following his passions while practicing humility; these qualities will keep Vlad a constant name in our personal comedy collections.
Catch the full interview below on EmEz’s Youtube Channel “The Sitdown with EmEz”.