Mini Q&A with Ophira Eisenberg
Ophira Eisenberg is the host of NPR’s and WNYC’s new weekly trivia, puzzle, and game show Ask Me Another. She recently performed on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and her book debut memoir, Screw Everyone: Sleeping My Way to Monogamy is available everywhere. Check her out this summer at Brooklyn’s Union Hall!
Favorite response to a heckler or troll?
What are you my mother?
Describe your worst gig.
It was my first paid road gig – at a strip club that was dark on Mondays (like Broadway) so the owner didn’t advertise the show and no one came. To try to save it, he called the strippers and they showed up with their boyfriends and friends. I died pretty hard on that stage, with that audience. But I did get $20.
On your deathbed, what transcendent advice would you croak at a young (female/LGBTQI) comedian?
Just. Keep. Going.
What’s your first impulse when someone says “women aren’t funny”?
What is this 2004? We’re done with that. Proven it a 1000 times over so step aside and let me do my job, you go back to your shitty life/cave.
When you were coming up in comedy, what helped you stick with it?
Best comedy advice you ever got?
Wash your hands. Ha. But seriously – meet you audience after the show, shake their hands, but then wash your hands.
Worst comedy advice you ever got?
“Your act should be more angry.”
Favorite response to “What’s it like to be a woman in comedy”?
Single word that always cracks you up?
Puke. Sorry. But yup. I’m as low brow as the next person.
Was there one person who inspired you to become a comedian? If so, who, why, how?
Sigh, my mom, my brother. And then Carol Burnett.
For standups: what advice do you have for how to level up from open mics + bringers to actual spots?
It’s really a game of perseverance and having a consistently good set.
Feelings about the word “comedienne”?
I wrote an entire chapter in my book about how much I hate it, but in short, we play the same drunk crowds, we deal with the same bookers. I’m a comic, just like you.
Ophira Eisenberg is a Canadian comic, writer, and actress from Calgary, now living in New York City. When she’s not hosting her weekly NPR show, Ask Me Another, you can find her at pretty much any club around New York City, and at exclusive venues and bars when she tours on the road. Her tour schedule can be found here.
Facebook: Ophira Eisenberg
CARSEN SMITH (intern, branding and content) performs standup and improv in New York City. She co-created the improvised cooking show “I’ll Have What She’s Having,” which ran at Nashville’s Third Coast Comedy Club. @carsenasmith