Kira Soltanovich is an American comedian, writer, and actress best known for her work on prank-oriented reality shows such as Oxygen Network's Girls Behaving Badly TV Guide Network's Trapped by TV Guideand Tru TV's How To Be A Grown Up .
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Hi I’m Comedian Kira Soltanovich: a stand up comic, mom, immigrant and exhausted by all of it. You can follow me @kiracomedy.
I’m in the stand up doc Dying Laughing among many amazing comedians like Shandling, Seinfeld and Schumer.
UPDATE Wow, that was cool! I did it. My first AMA! Thank you Reddit and Dying Laughing and all the awesome people who sent in questions. This was fun and I look forward to the next one.
How have current political issues in the states altered your approach to comedy, if at all? It must be a great source of material, but also terrifying.
I try to keep my stand up as personal as possible, so I don't delve into political jokes too much... although we can all use a laugh and there's plenty to laugh about politically nowadays! I do make snarky political comments on twitter... that's my only outlet.
Who are your dream collaborators?
What is your favorite pop tart?
If you had to be reborn as an animal which would it be?
Pop Tart: I've never had one! I know, I know. I tried, but the minute my tongue hit the frosting I almost gagged. Is it food or particle board. Sorry, it might be your favorite snack ever and I just totally offended you.
Collaborators: Judd Apatow! He's so on fire right now and he appreciates female voices.
Reborn animal: Some sort of bird. Eagle? Wouldn't the gift of flight just be the best ever??
On a personal level, what are a few of your favorite films?
Groundhog Day might be one of the most perfect films ever.
So I've actually seen "Dying Laughing" and really liked it! I did notice that it's only a small percentage of female comics there so it made me wonder -- as hard as it is to be a comic at ALL -- is it just even SUPER hard as a female to rise in the business? Are you just a pillar of toughness?
Chicks have to work a little smarter and a little different than dude comics. First of all, we are inherently not funny, right? Well, that's what people like to believe anyway. Female comics have to be a million things at once: approachable so the women in the audience aren't threatened. Feminine, but not too sexy. Sweet, but not a pushover so crowds don't steam roll you. But ultimately, you have to have jokes! Jokes, jokes, jokes. Everything else will fall into place.
What is the meaning of life?
....and best tip for aspiring stand up comedians? What is the best city for growing your career also
The meaning of life? Love. Best tip for aspiring comedians? Ask yourself if you want to be poor for a long time. Yes? Great. Do you want to perform in front of bitter comedians at open mic for a while? You do? Can you be isolated in a Red Roof Inn for several days in the middle of Arkansas? You can? Then stand up is for you! Now go write, write, write, perform anywhere you can and get back to me in 5-7 years. Best city?? San Francisco about 20 years ago.
Favorite way to de stress ? How do you deal with unruly crowds ?
Destress: getting naked with Koreans at a Korean Spa. I love to steam and sauna! Unruly crowds? I pride myself in taming even the most unruly crowds with quick, smart crowd work. As long as you always stay calm, you're always going to be louder than any heckler because you have the microphone, so much like a police officer with a bullhorn, you have the power!
Favorite cheesy joke?
I can't write out the entire joke, but the punchline is: You're supposed to put the potato in the front, not the back.
i should mention i think that your book ¡SATIRISTAS! should be required reading for any comedian. it touch bases on a lot of important things across the spectrum of pros. i've read it so many times.
can you talk about the carlin interview in the book? that was done shortly before he died, right? how was his energy, etc. because that interview is so fucking good.
I didn't write SATIRISTAS but I'll pass along the compliment to Paul Provenza!
What is the very best cheese?
Blue. But technically it's also mold... so it's the very worst cheese too.
What was it like being in a documentary?
I've been in a few. This one was different because the questions weren't surface questions. I liked how real everyone's responses were. I like being honest on stage and I felt I could be brutally honest in Dying Laughing.
Who are the female stand ups you look up to, that inspired you to do this?
Paula Poundstone, Paula Poundstone, Paula Poundstone, Paula Poundstone
One more question and then I'll stop, I swear! The first time you bombed on stage, was it super hard to recover? Did you have to learn to do that? (Like, is it a learned skill?)
Comedians are so complicated. We have to be vulnerable on stage, and yet thick skinned at the same time. We have to command the audience and yet be personable so that they will listen to you. It's a constant push pull. So when you bomb, you hate yourself, you hate the audience, you hate like for a minute... and then you have to dust yourself off and get right back on stage. We are the verbal bull riders and bombing is just getting bucked off and then jumping right back on!
How do you maintain your relationships when you're out on the road? Does distance make the heart grow fonder or does distance create distance?
When my husband and I first met, I was on the road 30 weeks a year so he knew what he was getting into. With my kids, that's a different story. I can't go on the road as much as I used to. When I'm gone for a long time, I have to take them with me! Fun! Either way, the road always sounds good for the first two/three days. THEN, I really want to get the F back home!!!
Is the movie in theaters? Online?
Yes! It opens today! http://dyinglaughingfilm.com
God, sounds like a psychiatrist could make a living specializing in stand-up comedian clientele.
Probably! I've never been to a therapist (although I do want to go some day) because I'm scared they might "fix" me.
Did you know you were going to be a stand up comedian in high-school?
I knew when I was 5 years old. When I watched Mork from Ork sit on a couch using his head I told my parents that's what I want to do. My brother told me that Mork was a comedian. I had no idea what that was but I just remember repeating that to my parents over and over again.
Do you love BB8?
From Star Wars? Yes. Intensely.
Is this Matt??? Hi!
Well, I was going to ask something embarrassing but decided to be nice :P
You don't have to be nice!
How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
Hi Ms.Soltanovich! What was it like working with thebdoc crew and Director (s)? :~)
They're great! They obviously love stand up and that passion showed while shooting and now while promoting the film. They really have a deep appreciation for comedians... since we're going to monopolize their lives for a while! Producing a doc takes a lot of time and sweat to see all the way through. Also, they're British so everything they say sounds soooooo cool.