"Judy Tenuta's secret to being funny? Being sassy."

By Jason Tanamor

For more than 20 years, comedienne Judy Tenuta has been making audiences laugh and wowing them with her extraordinary accordion skills. Now, the veteran stand-up is an ordained minister and some day plans to ‘open the “love goddess chapel of entrapment” in Vegas.’ Well, maybe. Tenuta did, however, open up to Zoiks! Online about her life in comedy.

Q – You’ve been in comedy for more than 20 years. What’s your secret to being funny for so long?

A - Fun! I have to have fun being sassy!

Q – What’s the best thing about being a “Love Goddess?”

A - Total strangers kiss my feet and tell me everyone mistakes them for me. Meanwhile they look like a Chia Pet in pampers - nasty!!

Q – Your name is up there in regard to legendary comediennes. Aside from you, Roseanne, Ellen, and Whoopi, who would you say had the biggest impact on female comedians?

A - Thank you for the compliment and I admire all of them, but I would say Phyllis Diller and Joan Rivers really paved the way for modern female comics. Ooh and of course Sarah Palin - not!!

Q – There used to be only a handful of superstar comedians. Now, with cable outlets, Internet and comedy specials, the landscape introduced a new generation of “superstar” comedians. If you were the President and you had to give a speech, what would your “state of the stand-up circuit” entail?

A - My “state of the stand-up” would tell the 24 hour news stations to stick to news and stop giving airtime to party crashers at the White House, Octomoms, Jon and Kate, and Balloon Boy and anyone else who gets arrested to get a reality show.

Q – How were you able to make the accordion such a cool instrument?

A - Wow, I didn't know I made the accordion cool. I just use it to punish people, especially if they are not worshipful.

Q – You were one of the first comedians to incorporate song into you act. What’s it like being the trendsetter for all the musical comedy acts today?

A - I love music, and my father always sang to me, so it just seems natural to sing while I'm sassin.’

Q – I read that you’re now an ordained minister. What exactly does that mean for Judy Tenuta?

A – Yes, the goddess is now an ordained minister and hopefully I will open the “love goddess chapel of entrapment” in Vegas, right next to the Elvis drive-thru wedding chapel. It could happen.

Q – Do you think that with all the funny things that happened last year alone there will ever be a shortage of stand-up material?

A - You can't beat reality for material. Everything from Tiger to the Governator turning Mexico into a prison. That's called "taco hell."

Q – You’re big into gay rights. It seems that religious people make a big deal of this when there really shouldn’t be, probably being the reason why gay marriage is always a topic in the news. Since you’re a love goddess/ordained minister, what is your advice to those who continually oppose gay marriage and gay rights in general?

A - This is America, the land of the free. Every stud puppet and sub virgin in this country should have the right to marry and be miserable regardless of sexual preference!

Q – Anything you wanted to add?

A - Just this: Thank you for believing in “Judyism.”


Jason Tanamor is the Editor of Zoiks! Online. He is also the author of the novels, "Hello Lesbian!" and "Anonymous." Email Jason at jason@zoiksonline.com.

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