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Comedy Saved Her from the Loony Bin: Recovery Comedian Sassi
Recovery Comedians, Comics Anonymous, Recovery Comedy, Recovery Comic, Clean and Sober Comedy
You may have seen Sassi on MTV, Nickelodeon, Good Morning America, doing promos for Adult Swim Super Deluxe or even in a Lysol Commercial!  She has worked with Chicago City Limits, Blue Man Group and The National Theatre of Performing Arts. She has been featured in the New York Underground Comedy Festival, The Mamapalooza Festival and The Women in Comedy Festival. Sassi lives in New York City with her son Liam Jon Keegan and their service dog Shaggy.

Recovery Comedy:  What were you like as a kid?

Sassi:  I was a huge day dreamer.  I would walk down the street looking up at the sky in my own world.  It's a wonder I didn't get hit by a car.

Recovery Comedy:  What made you decide to become a stand-up comedian and how long have you been performing?

Sassi:  When I was a kid I always did impressions of my teachers for my family and friends and they laughed.  I came to New York City to act and answered an ad in "Back Stage" looking for comics.  I did it once and was hooked.  I have been performing in one form or another all my life.

Recovery Comedy:  Were you performing stand-up comedy before you got into recovery?

Sassi:  I was in recovery when I started doing stand-up.  I have only performed sober.  Some say alcohol gave them courage when performing.  I never knew how it would go down when I was drinking, so I'm glad not to have that wild card in the mix.  It's challenging enough as it is.

Recovery Comedy:  Does your comedy have a message and if so what is it?

Sassi:  No.  I do believe that laughter heals though.  I like to think I can bring joy and healing to people though comedy.

Recovery Comedy:  Who are your comedy idols?

Sassi:  Robin Williams, Rita Rudner, Steve Martin, Lucille Ball

Recovery Comedy:  Where does your inspiration for material come from?

Sassi:  I write about my personal experience.  A lot of the best jokes come from my pain.

Recovery Comedy:  What is your joke writing process?

Sassi:  I record every set and I write down everything I think is funny.  A lot of my jokes I "hear" either in dialogue with someone or in my head.  I have an ear for comedy.  I write bits down, try them, record them and improve upon them.  A lot of my writing is editing and I love editing.

Recovery Comedy:  What is your kryptonite?

Sassi:  I can get in my head when there is industry or someone else whose opinion matters to me in the audience.  Luckily, enough of those "people loved me until I could love myself" like in program and I worked through the fear.  It helps me to think of comedy as doing service.  When it's not only about me I can relax.

Recovery Comedy: Is your family supportive of your comedy career?

Sassi:  They are from a small town and are all teachers so it scared the heck out of them at first.  They wanted me to be a teacher too, but once I had some success, they got on board.

Recovery Comedy:  Is comedy part of your healing process?

Sassi:  I would say yes.  Comedy definitely keeps me sane.  My first marriage was troubled and we have a special needs kid.  If I hadn't gotten out a few nights a week to do comedy I would have ended up in the loony bin.  I also have a lot of a lot of people pleasing issues.  Ironically the audience loves you when you love them first and don't care what they think.  They get uneasy when you try too hard.  If you beg them for approval like you would an emotionally unavailable alcoholic parent, they stare at you in silence.  This has been an amazing lesson to learn.

Recovery Comedy:  What was your worst experience performing comedy?

Sassi:  I made fun of Catholics (I am one) at a fire house and I didn't know they were staunch Catholics and they hated me.  It was the worst bomb ever.  Then the headliner came out as a nun and made even more fun of Catholics.  The thing was, we sent a video with all our Catholic material on it.  Apparently the booker didn't watch the tapes.

Recovery Comedy:  What was your best experience performing comedy?

Sassi:  Thank God there have been so many.  Performing in rehabs is definitely top on my list.  Going home to Rumford, Maine and performing at 49 Franklin for friends and family was very exciting.  I love going on the road with my boyfriend Ross Bennett.  I love working at my home club Broadway Comedy Club in NYC and Comedy Works in Albany and City Steam in Hartford.  I love doing Spa Ha Ha.  It's my ladies' night out show I do with Barb Singer and we offer spa services beforehand.   Ironically after making fun of Catholics, I now do a Christian Comedy Show at the Comic Strip in NYC.  It's very empowering to work that clean and very healing to allow God into my comedy in such a literal way.  I love doing birthday roasts and toasts.  They are so much work to write but when they kill, it's amazing!  And of course it just rocks when people come up to you after a show and say. "We loved you so much!  You were the funniest one!  Why aren't you famous?"

Recovery Comedy:  What is your favorite joke?

Sassi:  This is my favorite joke that I've written: I was married for 16 years, in couples therapy for 20.  At the end the couples' therapist said, "I don't know about you guys, but I need to see other people!"

Recovery Comedy:  What is your comedy dream?

Sassi:  I want to write and make movies and act in them, and become very well known.  Then I want to go on the road and fill theaters.

To find out more information about Sassi or to book her for your next Recovery Event just click here!

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