Interview: Margaret Cho plans jokes about excessive stakes on Live and LIVID! tour

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Margaret Cho

Margaret Cho, courtesy Sergio Garcia.

Comedian Margaret Cho has seemingly been in all places on screen lately, from the wildly successful Hulu movie “Fire Island” to Comedy Central’s “Awkwafina Is Nora from Queens,” 2020 animated film “Over The Moon” (which was nominated for an Oscar), 2021’s “Good on Paper” and Netflix’s 2022 “Stand Out Comedy Special.” Cho additionally made appearances on HBO Max hits “The Flight Attendant” and “Hacks,” and is at present starring in “The L Word: Generation Q” on Showtime.

Margaret Cho: Live and LIVID!
June 2 (two shows)
Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco
Tickets: 7:30 present is offered out. 10 p.m. present: $50-$60.

Cho, who likes to stay busy, wouldn’t have it some other way.

“For me, it’s really about doing every thing. What’s great about the greatest way that I do stand-up is … until it’s a giant tour or one thing, it’s mostly focused on the weekends. Then during the week, I can go into TV and movie stuff,” the 54-year-old mentioned a couple of days before Christmas from her home in Los Angeles, where she’s lived full-time since 2016. “I usually attempt to work on an everyday basis if I can.”

The San Francisco native, named by Vogue as certainly one of its 9 finest feminine comedians of all time and by Rolling Stone as one of its 50 greatest stand-up comics of all time, is about to undertake one other big tour.

Live and LIVID! marks 40 years in comedy and guarantees plenty of wit and wrath concerning the state of the world. Cho stated that whereas her routines will be changing together with the day’s headlines, she’d got plenty to say about being queer, being an Asian American woman and being progressive.

On this day, she’s received many ideas on the scenario of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the latter of whom interviewed her for her podcast last fall about harmful Asian stereotypes. Now’s she’s drawing parallels from their tales.

“I’ve been following their story; to only see that vitriol that basically exists because a woman of shade is not even actually creating that much change but simply altering the imaginative and prescient of what a ‘royal family’ can do,” Cho said. “You see the disgusting illness of white supremacy, of racism, of sexism that is completely taken as regular. That sort of stuff is so disturbing to me.”

Margaret Cho

Margaret Cho, courtesy Sergio Garcia.

In the same breath Margaret Cho pivots to Donald Trump’s crudely made NFTs, which she mentioned may have been better made by the Lensa AI app.

“It’s this grift again, preying on poor working-class white Americans that truly consider that he’s going to help them; that he even cares about what’s occurring,” Cho said.

Cho pivots again, this time evaluating the number of youngsters killed with guns to the fabricated threat (often posed by evangelicals) to America’s youngsters by drag reveals.

“I am so upset about drag shows being terrorized by Christian evangelicals who haven’t any enterprise in drag, or why they’re even trying to frame my group, the LGBTQIA community, as being groomers one method or the other,” she mentioned. “I’m a survivor of sexual abuse as a child. I truly have also been a member of the queer neighborhood for my complete life, and I even have by no means encountered it within the queer group. It’s all the time been straight individuals. It’s at all times been straight men. … The greatest reason for demise for youngsters is guns. That’s the most important factor the Christian group is trying to promote—guns. Where is Jesus in that?”

Cho plans to talk about these very real issues, attempting to make sense of that, by both poking fun and speaking how she actually feels.

“There’s so many things to be mad about,” she stated. “It’s humorous, but it’s not. It’s funny, however it’s horrible. It’s humorous, but the stakes are very high.”

Cho said performing in San Francisco, where she grew up because the daughter of bookshop house owners and began performing stand-up when she was nonetheless in her early teens, is still particular for her although her household and associates have moved away. She performed a personal present at a convention last year, however her last public show within the Bay Area was at SF Sketchfest in 2020. She additionally views the Palace of Fine Arts, the place she’s acting on the Live and LIVID! tour, in excessive regard.

“I’ve been doing exhibits there for the reason that late ‘80s. It’s where the Exploratorium was!” she mentioned. “Now, once I return [to San Francisco], I wish to go to Haight Street, the Castro. I miss just going and hanging out.”

The rest of the tour spans each coasts, with a number of shows in a number of cities. But exterior of this tour, Cho continues to remain busy with TV and movie work, including the present “The L Word: Generation Q.” Her future initiatives embody a model new present with Gina Rodriguez and Martin Mull coming later this 12 months.

She’s got a number of indie movies in development that she said are digging deeper into the Asian id, and she’s working on new music for a model new film primarily based on a music she launched in 2015 known as “Ron’s Got a DUI,” the video for which featured her pal, the late Leslie Jordan. Jordan was also imagined to star within the film. At the time of this interview, Cho was making ready to host a celebration of life for Jordan that might be held at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville in February.

The music that she’s writing for the film right now is a step outside her consolation zones of comedic and power pop—Cho has released two music albums; most just lately 2016’s American Myth.

“I’m still lively within songwriting, however not in the way in which that I was,” she said.


Margaret Cho appeared because the Poodle on the 2019 season of Fox TV present “The Masked Singer.” She shared one story about what it’s like behind the scenes.
Everybody that you go to set with, together with your whole family and friends, and likewise representatives, have to be masked as well, as a outcome of whenever you see someone with anyone else, that’s a sign that you know that’s the individual in the mask, which I suppose is actually cute. So everyone you see has a masks on. It lends itself to that kind of “Eyes Wide Shut” feeling. It’s really a really sweaty course of. I actually love that show. It’s amazing how massive it’s become… I did believe that it might be, because it’s such an enormous, big hit in Korea, and it was in Thailand, too, by the time we started.

And Cho said she’d actually like to explorer the horror style. She stated she loves horror movies and rattled off a lengthy record of her favorites from 2022, including Spanish film “Piggy,” Taiwanese movies “The Sadness” and “Incantation,” and Thai/South Korean film “The Medium.”

“I at all times love Asian horror movies,” she stated. “Within Asian tradition, lots of times, the supernatural is built into society. The supernatural and the natural exist side by aspect, like when we’ve Thanksgiving, it’s also to celebrate the lifeless. We have tables where we give meals for the lifeless and stuff. … You do these ceremonial issues for other worldly entities. It’s a really pure thing to consider within the supernatural. That’s why our horror movies are at all times one-up, tremendous scary; as a outcome of they exist already in the same plane.”

Outside of work—which, granted, isn’t plenty of time—Margaret Cho has been moving into VR gaming, which she described as an creative method to communicate with the world, and catering to her three cats and Chihuahua Lucia, who accompanies her virtually all over the place. The greatest current development in her life, and one that provides her hope, she joked, was that considered one of her cats stopped vomiting proper after consuming.

“My main job is to take care of them, however then I get to do get up comedy and do films and TV on the side,” she said. “My whole life is really simply in service of those animals.”

Follow editor Roman Gokhman at

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