LAFF Interview #10: Lashonda Lester

Local stand-up/one-woman-show performer Lashonda Lester (aka Shondee Superstar) is a Detroit native who moved to Austin a few years ago under gubernatorial order. I’m glad that the Mitten State let us have Lashonda, because she’s freakin’ awesome. Lashonda’s witty, raw storytelling really does benefit all Texans, especially the patrons of Texas’s all-female comedy festivals. Lashonda used to be a pro-wrestling manager AND a madam, so you know she’s got stories.

LAFF: Today I learned that it was none other than former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm who encouraged you to move to Austin from Detroit. What would you say to Gov. Granholm if you had a chance to speak to her?

Backstory: She didn’t personally encourage me, but in October 2003, Gov. Granholm held a press conference introducing the “Cool Cities Initiative” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cool_Cities_Initiative. Long story short, she talked about how Austin, Texas was the model city that she wanted places like Ferndale, Michigan to become.

If I had the chance to speak to her, I would say thank you! Her glowing review of Austin definitely made me say “Yeah, that IS where I need to be!” Thanks, Governor Jenny ❤

LAFF: You are a fantastic storyteller. What do you hope your audience comes away with from your show?

Thank you for the compliment! I hope audiences come away entertained from the stories and possibly inspired to follow whatever wacky dream or hobby they’ve always wanted to pursue.

LAFF: What advice do you have for other ladies who are working on one-woman shows?

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I think a lot of creative people have a hard time asking for assistance for whatever the reason.  We just want to do it all ourselves; Writer, director, performer, publicist, salesperson, etc. It can become overwhelming and there’s nothing wrong with saying, “I can’t do everything and I need help.”

Be excited about your show! If someone asks you about your show and you’re nonchalant about it, what makes you think they want to pay to see some shit, you don’t even care about? I’m all about excitement! When I tell people about my show, it sounds like its gonna be the second coming of Cats and A Chorus Line! If you don’t believe in your show, who will?

Shondee Superstar: This Shit Really Happened really happens this Friday at 10pm.

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