Alisha Gaddis is a humorist, writer and Latin Grammy winner. She is a member of both AEA and SAG-AFTRA. We spoke for close to an hour on the phone and had a great conversation. She is bubbly, outgoing and exciting to chat with.
The Playbill Collector (TPC): Did you go to school for performing?
Alisha Gaddis (AG): Yes, I moved from Indiana to New York City for school. I went to NYU (Tisch) for Drama. During my time there I also went abroad and studied Performance Art in Sydney, Australia.
TPC: What did you do after college?
AG: I got cast in JEKYLL AND HYDE and moved to Australia. I did a show at the Sydney Opera house and then moved to Los Angeles for a TV show. It was on HBO about stand up comics.
TPC: At that point did you transition out of theater and more into comedy?
AG: I absolutely love theater but yes, I started to do more with stand up. My first major show I opened for Ray Romano.
AG: I was producing stand up shows in New York City. I wanted to give people monologues to perform by people who are actually funny. All the people who worked on the book are very creative and talented. In fact, one of the girls in the book just signed on to write for “Ellen”.
TPC: How many people write for the book?
AG: There are twenty writers. Most of the writers wrote two to four pieces. I wrote many of the monologues and edited everything.
TPC: Is this a one time book deal?
AG: I’m actually writing four in the series. In addition, there will be: a male version, one for teenage boys and one for teenage girls.
TPC: How do you choose your writers?
AG: I have my fingers and hands in many pots so I try to pull from people I know. I’ll either see someone at improv or see written pieces and talk to people about writing for me. Some people say not to work with friends but I mostly work with friends. They are great people and I want to see them work!
TPC: Is this book geared only towards actors?
AG: No, many people are reading them as short stories. Some of them read like monologues but more of them are more read as a book.
TPC: Aside from improv, what takes up your time?
AG: I tour with a band called Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band. This summer we were on the road for two months! I’m also coming out with a PBS show in September called “Lishy Lou and Lucky Too”.
For more information on Alisha, check out: http://alishagaddis.com/