To newer fans, Amy Sedaris is the unmistakable voice of some of this generation's most beloved animated voices: Cinderella from Shrek, Jill from Puss and Boots, and Ma Angler from SpongeBob SquarePants. To longtime fans, she'll always be the former drug addict/hooker/46-year-old high-school student Jerri Blank from the iconic Strangers with Candy. And to craft enthusiasts, she's a poor-man's hero (literally, as her latest book is titled Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People).
This Saturday, the actor/author/comedian/crafter visits the Fitzgerald Theater, where she'll be the featured guest for the season finale of Minnesota Public Radio's Wits series, alongside musical guests They Might Be Giants. The show is already sold out, but that didn't stop Sedaris from getting on the phone with City Pages this past week to discuss Minnesota memories, her summer vacation plans, and how she's currently neck-deep in the world of quilting.
So when was the last time you were in Minnesota?
I think I did the Wits event a few years back, but I can't remember when. So I guess I haven't been back since the last time I was there.
What projects have you been working on as of late?
I've actually been working on a fabric line for quilters. There is this company that made a fabric that had pictures of past presidents on it, and I loved it and couldn't find it anywhere. So I called and inquired about it and they asked me if I'd work with them to develop some new patterns. That's really been my creative project lately.
Interesting. Aside from your quilting work, do you have any other summer plans? Vacations maybe?
I don't really have any plans at the moment, but you never know. I'm actually not that big on vacations, and don't go too far unless it's to do a job. I like to take my trips in pill form.
I guess Minnesota is really your summer vacation then?
Yeah, but I love Minnesota. You guys have a great airport.
Everyone loves the airport.
That's not all you guys have though. The Walker is great; and the State Fair is the best one I've ever been to.
You're a State Fair fan?
Absolutely. I went about four years ago and saw things that inspired projects in my books. You've got the butter sculpting that's great, and lots of good stuff.
That's a pretty solid endorsement. Wait; I guess I should ask how many State Fairs you've actually been to?
Plenty. I've been to the North Carolina State Fair which is great but I think yours is the best.
Having done so much voice work these past few years, do you find yourself getting recognized more for your animated characters? Or for your work as Jerri (from Strangers with Candy)?
Honestly, I don't really get recognized. It's great having different audiences; it's really fun. I've got the animated stuff like Puss and Boots, plus I've done appearances on The Good Wife, some Downy commercials. But I get to stay under the radar and have a normal life; I don't think I could handle being recognized all the time.
Maybe you'll be recognized when you get to town here. Your show is already sold out.
Oh wow! That's really great; now I've even more excited!
IF YOU GO:
Wits featuring Amy Sedaris and They Might Be Giants
10 Exchange St E Saint Paul, MN 55101
Saturday, June 30
Tickets are sold out. However, there will be a ticket giveaway during the "Tweet Up" celebration outside the Fitz starting at 6 p.m.