Sherri Shepherd is a force of nature. In addition to co-hosting The View and starring as Angie Jordan in 30 Rock, Shepherd has created her own line of wigs and will release her second book this Spring.
This weekend, the Emmy-winning actress comes to the Tempe Center for the Performing Arts to tape her comedy special It's My Time to Talk. We talked to Shepherd to get the scoop on this latest endeavor and find out about some of her other performance ventures.
How long have you been working on the material for this special?
About a year or year and a half. My roots are standup. I started with Jamie Foxx and Chris Tucker and Monique when I was doing standup comedy. Then the acting took off and started paying my bills, but I never strayed from doing standup comedy. Then when I got the spot on the View, I didn't do standup for a while so a lot of people don't even know that that's where I started. So this taping is a really great way to just get back in there and let everybody know I'm a standup comedian.
Is standup where you feel most comfortable?
They're all different beasts. And I love them all. But I love being on stage because you can't blame anybody but yourself. I love sharing my story, my journey. But I also love acting; that's a lot of fun. I can't figure out which one I like the best so I'm glad that I just get to keep doing all of the things that I love.
Do you ever get stage fright before a performance?
When I do Dancing With The Stars, I get major stage fright. Because that is something that was completely out of my comfort zone -- dancing and doing a samba, a rumba, a tango, and a jive. I realized it as I was standing there and they announced, "dancing the Jive! Sherri Shepherd and her partner Val Chmerkovskiy," and I was like, "I got stage fright -- here we go!"
How do you feel now that the last episode of 30 Rock has aired?
I am in such mourning. We have black shades covering our windows over here. My husband and I are such fans of 30 Rock (and not only because I'm on it). We watch all the 30 Rock marathons. It's really just a great, well-written show so I'm going to miss it.
Were you bummed about not being on the finale episode?
I was! I'm not gonna lie, up until the day they were filming the last episode I called Tracy, and I was all, "there's no way you could cut to a walk on? I ain't gotta say a thing, just let me walk by on camera!" He was like we got too many people already, and I was like "Please Tracy, please. Who I gotta sleep with? I gotta sleep with Tina?" So yeah I was sad, but you know what? It's ok. I was grateful for what they gave me. 30 Rock was just such a beautiful part of my life.
What's next for you?
I have something in the works with TV Land, and I've got a book coming out Plan D in which I talk about how to live a healthy life with Type 2 diabetes and how to loose weight even if you're diabetic. I've already finished my last movie so hopefully I have some auditions comin' up too.
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How do you find time for it all?
Because I love it so much, it doesn't seem like work. It really, really doesn't. I just have so much fun. They say, if you want something done, give it to a busy person. I was just sitting here doing my final book edits, and I looked at the TV and went "oh my god, I'm on Rachel Ray!" and I just sat here and laughed. It's just so much fun it doesn't feel like work.
You can purchase tickets for Shepherd's show It's My Time to Talk via the Tempe Center for the Arts' website. There are two shows this Saturday, February 9th -- one at 7pm and one at 9:30pm.