<i>Big Gay Sketch Show</i>'s Julie Goldman: Exclusive Interview
Julie Goldman, star of Logo’s Big Gay Sketch Show, breaks all the rules at breakneck speed. Whether she’s making fun of the occasional celebrity or plotting her next move into another corner of the entertainment world, Goldman does it with a smile and palpable ambition. She’s also been injecting her own renegade brand of hilarity into the comedy scene with her all-women comedy show Offensive Women, which is running in both New York and Los Angeles.
Could you tell me a how you developed your Liza Minnelli character for Big Gay Sketch Show?
SuperLiza was written by Julie Klausner and Jackie Clarke [also members of Offensive Women]. Basically having a few meetings with them—I watched the Liza/Larry King interview and just sort of watched a bunch of her stuff online, and then kind of put my spin on it, and there we were.
When doing a characterization of a famous person, like Liza or Suze Orman, what percent is imitation and how much is pure creative craziness? How much reality do you need to make it work?
I never have seen myself as an impressionist and don't "do" celebrities in my act, but the ones in BGSS were a chance for total craziness. For me, celebrity impressions are more of my own comment on them or fun kind of characterization of how I perceive them. There's definitely research—but the fun part is figuring out the angle and what's my take on them.
My favorite sketch on the show ever was the "Ladyline" women's hotline with you as the caller and Erica Ash as the fantasy phone girl. How many times did you have to rehearse that before you were ready to tape it?
I think we rehearsed and read through it maybe a total of five or six times. They didn't want us to over-rehearse.
Can you tell which is the funniest take when you're doing it? Or do you only know when you see them played back?
I can never tell what's the funniest take. I have no clue.
Rosie O'Donnell is the executive producer. Had you met her before the show? What was it like the first time you met her?
I had never met Rosie before the show. Basically I auditioned in front of her. I was scared out of my manties.
How hands-on is she? Why isn’t she part of the cast?
She is pretty hands-off. I don't think she has a desire to be a cast member. But she did some cameos, which are very fun.
I heard that most of the cast is actually straight. Is that true? Aren't there enough funny queer people in the world?
Actually, most of the cast is gay. Only two members aren't. But that doesn't mean they haven't queered off, or maybe they have? One never knows. This show is 85 percent run by queers. It’s pretty amazing. We’re all so lucky and I can say I love every second of it. For an out performer like me, this is absolutely a dream show. At this point we don't know if there will be a season three, so if people love it, they need to go online and let Logo know they want more Big Gay Sketch.
Are you in talks with Logo, Comedy Central, HBO or anyone to do your own special? I would love to see that on TV. Where would you like your career to go from here?
I am in talks with Logo about another project but it’s very very early and who knows what will happen. No one else has approached me about a special or my own thing, but I'm working on it. I'd like to put Offensive Women on TV, and do an international tour; I'd like a talk show, a sitcom, a dramedy, a Spanish telenovela, a soap opera role, a romantic comedy, a production company…and I want a fragrance, a clothing line, a pet shelter, a flat stomach. Basically I'm gunning to be the lezzie Sean Piddydoody Combs, or the lezbo Tyler Perry. Dreams can come true. I wanna do it all.
Check out the November 2008 issue of Curve for more on Offensive Women, Big Gay Sketch Show and America’s funniest lesbian comics.