4. What inspired you to pursue your art? What were the challenges you overcame in this?
Co-producing/founding Women Stand Up itself came from a few things. I felt compelled to create a space where women could speak their minds and tell their stories openly and with support. At the time the Alabama abortion laws were being passed and that really got my fire going to give women power over themselves. It also got my fire going to get people to listen to women, really listen. Comedy seemed like a digestible way to do that. And stand up is such a personal, intimate form of comedy, that it seemed like a powerful way to do that.
The challenges came when I realized I was very unqualified to make that happen. I had no idea what I was doing, but I had my partner in crime, Natalie, and we did it anyways. Because why not it be us? We felt inspired and we went for it and now it’s only the beginning.
A separate challenge was when we would hear a response of ‘there’s already female comedians, why do you need to do this'? Aside from stand up being a very empowering thing to do that anyone should try, especially women right now, we did find a missing piece that wasn’t really being solved by there ‘already being female comedians’. The New York City comedy scene/open mic scene isn’t exactly an approachable one, especially when you’re a woman alone and especially when you’re starting out. No one was making a supportive community where women could begin, get experience, experiment, push one another and own their stuff before venturing into that low lit, grimy world.
5. What’s been the most rewarding part of being an artist for you? Do you have any advice for future artists?
The most rewarding part so far has always been the people coming up to me after the show and saying how much a performance affected them. It helps reassure me that this ‘art’ that can seem so lofty or silly at times really does have an affect on people. The relationships and family that come from art are kind of irreplaceable. So having said that, my advice would be to get others involved in your ideas because you’re going to need others to make them happen. Artistic dreams aren’t meant to stay in private notebooks or on bedroom walls forever.