Thursday, April 23, 2015

Spotlight On...Dena Blizzard

Name: Dena Blizzard

Hometown: Moorestown, NJ

Education: I have a bunch of degrees in biology and gerontology, none of which help my current career in stand-up and theatre. My husband is bitter. We don’t talk about it.

Favorite Credits: I make a mean gluten free chocolate-chip muffin. I can say the alphabet backwards and I co-hosted with Anderson Cooper on his daytime show. What more is there?

Why comedy?: Because I’m pretty sure I can’t hold down a real job. I interviewed at Crate and Barrel but they looked at me weird when I handed them my headshot.  I love comedy. I think Motherhood REQUIRES comedy. It’s really the only way to survive. I think I was born to do this….Motherhood and comedy.

Tell us about One Funny Mother: I’m Not Crazy!: One Funny Mother: I’m Not Crazy was born out of my first few years of being a new mom. I spent many days being peed on and wandering around my house whispering under my breath “I’m not crazy, right? This just isn’t normal.” I think Motherhood is the most rewarding job in the world, but it is as hard as shit. (And just an fyi…that can be really hard)

What inspired you to create One Funny Mother: I’m Not Crazy!!:  I don’t know that I was inspired to write it. I just wanted to get out of my house and talk bad about my kids to anyone that would listen.  I wrote most of this material in comedy clubs at night. My husband was activated in the Air Force and doing stand up was sometimes the only time I would talk to adults all day. It was very therapeutic to write and I think it’s therapeutic to watch. You realize that EVERY mom thinks she’s going nuts. That’s how you know you are doing it right.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: I enjoy theaters both large and small. The performing side of me loves sharing these stories of motherhood with as many people as possible but the stand-up side of me loves the intimacy of smaller rooms. What inspires me as an artist is ”finding the funny” in the minutia of everyday life.  Like every parent attending my show, I’m annoyed by life sometimes. If I can learn to find the funny and give parents something to laugh about the next time things happen I’ve done my job.

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: I would love to work with Ellen Degeneres. She’s my hero. I also love Chris Hardwick from “Talking Dead.” My son loves that show and I force him to cuddle with me. He’s 15 and the opportunities to snuggle are slim. (I know it seems weird to snuggle while watching zombie killings but I’ll take what I can get.)

What show have you recommended to your friends?: I love “Shut up, Sit Down and Eat” playing at the Snapple Theater.  The show features four amazing comedians: Chris Monty, Joe Moffa, Tina Georgi and Eric Tartaglione in the setting of a therapists’ office. It’s non-stop laughs and as a woman who loves to laugh, this is a must see!

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Everyone tells me I remind them of Sandra Bullock. She would have to play me and it would be called “Dena is finally famous enough to have Sandra Bullock play her.”

If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: I would love to have seen Whoopi Goldberg in her one-woman show. It was ground breaking.  Lily Tomlin would also be on my list. I don’t think watching her on video does her work justice.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Dark Chocolate covered caramels with sea salt from Walgreens.  And tootsie rolls!  Oh wait, potato chips.  Wait…is wine guilty?

If you weren’t working in entertainment, you would be _____?: Making Money? I don’t know. I really don’t see myself being capable of holding down a real job. I’m pretty inappropriate. I would love to be a tour guide for a trolley in San Francisco, but only for a day. I’m also addicted to “Orange is the New Black” so I think I would like to be a guard in a women’s prison but I’m almost positive that would be a mistake.

What’s up next?: Sleeping is next. Lots of sleeping. Then, some vacation time where my mom makes us eat at every Applebees in Canada because she likes their salad bar. We will be touring the show through Georgia this summer and I’m hosting the Miss America Pageant in September and then back in NY for the United Solo Festival. Very exciting (except the Applebee’s part.)