Connecticut has been lucky to see a string of talented comedians coming through town, and that streak continues this week as Maria Bamford comes to Foxwoods on Saturday, June 11.
But before her show, she was kind enough to take some time and answer some of our ridiculous questions, covering everything from her new Netflix Show, Lady Dynamite, to some of her early material, which still makes us laugh 15 years later.
CT Boom: There’s a lot of buzz around Lady Dynamite. Can you tell us a little bit about the process behind working with Netflix and how the show landed there? Are there more freedoms than with traditional networks?
Maria Bamford: Mitch Hurwitz had a deal to create programming there and I was lucky enough that he was interested in working together on the idea for a show. I hadn’t really had an interest from anyone to do a show – so it was a one-time break! From what I can tell, Netflix is very easy and helpful to work with creatively. I never got any critical feedback – which I think might be unusual.
CT Boom: Given that it’s on Netflix, is Lady Dynamite meant to be binge watched or should viewers pause between episodes to digest?
Maria Bamford: I like to wait a day between episodes – I’m watching season 2 of Bloodline, but that’s me. It’s nice to savor – like a ridged, barbecue potato chip.
CT Boom: Have you ever struggled to share personal stories as part of your act or in your TV work? Do you recall the moment when you “found your voice” in those personal stories?
Maria Bamford: Oversharing is my blessing and curse. I think, like everyone in life, your voice is always changing.
CT Boom: Speaking of voices, you do a lot of them in your act. Has anyone you’ve impersonated ever been offended or even flattered about being included in the act?
Maria Bamford: I know my family expressed concerns and now, is mostly flattered (my mom loves it!). The other voices are just variations on myself.
CT Boom: Excluding your own show (which we assume would be your favorite), what type of work have you enjoyed doing the most: animation/voice acting, stand-up, or live-action TV acting?
Maria Bamford: Everything is really wonderful – the best is just being able to have the time and wherewithal to enjoy each job. Sometimes there is so much to do that it’s harder to notice that you’re having fun – if there’s a bunch more that’s due and you’re preparing work on something else while you’re working. But that is a champagne problem – when the bubbly is flowing too quickly into your mouth and you need a smaller straw.
CT Boom: Do you feel as though each line of work has an influence on the others (i.e. Your TV work influencing your standup) or do they remain mostly independent?
Maria Bamford: Yes, they all bleed into each other, I think. I’m not good at compartmentalizing!
CT Boom: Did you actually get to punch Dean Cain?
Maria Bamford: Yes.
CT Boom: Are you really afraid of bears (specifically the North American Grizzly)? If so, are you aware of Connecticut’s unusually active bear population?
Maria Bamford: I’m intrigued and have high hopes of facing my fears.
CT Boom: What do you typically like to do after a show?
Maria Bamford: Reward myself with 2% milk and [an] orange-tinged, peanut butter cracker packet.
CT Boom: Did you ever actually have a miniature hamster named Bonita, and if so, how’s she doing? Still enjoying those 400 square feet in Downtown Los Angeles Korea Town?
Maria Bamford: No, she has passed (I’m sure by now). I had to return her to her natural habitat at Pet Co. due to the fact that she bit me several times, drawing blood. My husband [and] I now enjoy 900-square-feet in Highland park and are lucky (unlike the 60K people on the streets every night in LA) to have a home. If there’s a second season, all profits I hope will go to creating affordable housing in Los Angeles. It is ridiculous here.