Four Questions with Rachel Dratch, Comedienne and Author
We have a treat for you this week: Rachel Dratch. That's right, the SNL alumna extraordinaire, Lexington girl made good, and recent mommy memoirist is in town for a performance of Celebrity Autobiography at the Leventhal-Sidman JCC in Newton, and, for some reason, she deigned to answer my four questions! I'm not even going to tell you what I asked her, because you're going to read it anyhow, aren't you?
Tell me about Celebrity Autobiography and the event you're doing here in Boston. How did you come up with the idea?
I didn't come up with the idea. It's the brainchild of Eugene Pack, and I got involved several years ago in New York, where we do the show once a month. There is always a wide variety of actors who sit in—anyone from me to Ryan Reynolds to Florence Henderson! It's always a different show because of that. (Note to audience...Ryan Reynolds will not be in Boston! Sorry, ladies....)
Do you have a favorite performance from these readings? Any that stand out in your mind?
Lately I’ve been doing Madonna. That's pretty fun, but the passage is pretty obscene too. I asked to not do it last time in Boston because I didn't want my elderly relatives hearing me say all this graphic sexual stuff—I mean, extremely graphic! But one of my other faves is Burt Reynolds, who wrote an autobiography, and Loni Anderson, who wrote one too. So those two are used side-by-side for the show. Well, little-known fact: Burt Reynolds' secretary also felt the need to write an autobiography. So I play his sort of downtrodden secretary, and that's one of my favorite pieces.
You wrote your own memoir this year, Girl Walks into a Bar..., which seems to be about motherhood more so than your time on SNL. How has being a mom changed your outlook on comedy?
I don't think it's changed my outlook on comedy at all. The only thing it does in terms of showbiz is that I don't care as much if I don't get a part, because I don't like spending too much time away from him. So it makes the ups and downs of showbiz less important to me.
It seems inevitable that it will end up being read on stage. Who would you want to perform it for you, and why? Who would you absolutely not want to read from it?
Well, I hope it isn't inevitable that it's read on stage, because the stuff we read on stage is pretty bad! That's what makes it so funny. So I hope my book is never involved with the Celeb Autobio show!
Four Questions is a weekly interview column featuring interesting people connected with the Greater Boston Jewish community. Find past columns here. Have an idea of someone we should interview? Email Molly!