Ophira Eisenberg is a writer and comedian, originally from Canada, now living in New York City.
In university Ophira studied Anthropology and English at McGill, which some people call the “Harvard of the North.”
Today she makes her living as a writer, stand up comedian, NPR host and regular contributor to The Moth – the popular storytelling event, podcast and radio program.
Her writing has been featured in an anthology of great comedy, alongside that of Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Dennis Miller and Joan Rivers.
I was so happy to meet with Ophira, who was back in Toronto, where she hosted a sold out performance of The Moth. While in Toronto Ophira was staying at one of Toronto’s finest hotels, a long way from her days schlepping from one comedy club to another, hoping to find appreciative audiences.
We talk about everything from how she started with nothing in New York, the evolution of her stand up comedy, and the influence of the Moth’s storytelling techniques on her writing.
Ophira’s story “The Accident” on Youtube.
NPR’s “Ask Me Another” trivia show, hosted by Ophira.
Ophira’s book: “Screw Everyone: Sleeping My Way to Monogamy” at Amazon.
Ophira’s CDs on iTunes
Click to go to iTunes store
Laurie Elliott is a three-time Canadian Comedy Award-winner.
She had a recurring role on Much Music’s highly rated series “Video on Trial,” CBC TV’s “The Red Green Show” (for which she received a Gemini nomination for Best Ensemble Cast) and “The Jon Dore Television Show” (The Comedy Network/IFC) where she also worked as a story editor.
Prior to her life in comedy Laurie was a competitive diver.
During our chat I theorize that the discipline Laurie learned as a competitive diver is, in part, the secret to her success in comedy.
“I’ve Had Some Disturbing Moments in the Sack”
These days her comedy often revolves around relationships and we discuss how her husband feels about being the target of her jokes. She says her parents don’t mind the
fact that she gets into sexual material, but she admits she tells them the naughty bits are “just made up jokes.”
Laurie also writes and does voice work on animated TV series, including Total Drama, Skatoony, Detentionaire. We discus the difference between writing stand-up comedy and TV show scripts.
Follow Laurie on Twitter @ThaFloatingHead
Total Drama on Wikipedia
Kitchener Waterloo Comedy Festival
Fugget About It on Wikipedia