January 16, 2012

Jessica Lamour (CLAS 2009) is a talented comedienne, dancer, and actress who has worked on screen, most notably the HBO series Boardwalk Empire, and on stage—she once performed at the Apollo. Currently, Jessica can be seen doing improv comedy with the Upright Citizens Brigade in NYC, and she  is also on her way to releasing a new comedy web series, Possible Downgrade. Iris recently caught up with this accomplished performer and Hoo. Here’s what she had to say about being an entertainer, living and working in New York, and ringing in 2012. Iris: When did you know that you wanted to become a performer? Jessica: I knew I wanted to be a performer at various stages in my life. When I was 10 years old, I started competitive tap dancing and instantly fell in love with being on stage.  Once I graduated college, I realized I had a gift of making people laugh. So, I figured I’d combine my love for being on stage and making people laugh. Now, I perform improvisation and sketch comedy at the Upright Citizens Brigade in NYC. Iris: What is the scariest part of your job? Jessica: Not hearing any laughs in the audience. Iris: Do you have any resolutions for the New Year? Jessica: My resolution for the New Year is to create my own work; like sketches and to complete the comedy web-series, Possible Downgrade, that I am currently working on. Iris: How did U.Va. prepare you for your career? Jessica: Attending U.Va has prepared me with integral skills that I utilize daily, and our alumni database has played an important role in my career. Being able to network and speak with various alumni in my similar career path has been very helpful in discovering my career focus. Iris: Where do you see yourself in the future? Jessica: I really enjoy writing, so I hope to write and produce my own television sitcom. I am currently working on a comedy web series titled, Possible Downgrade, so right now my focus is on that and getting it off the ground. Iris: Who inspires you? Jessica: I am really inspired by our fellow UVA alumna Tina Fey. In the male dominated arena of comedy, she really has accomplished a lot and broken numerous barriers for future comediennes and female writers like myself. I hope to write and produce my own television sitcom one day as well. Iris: How do you spend your free time? Jessica: My free time is spent watching awesome sitcoms like 30 Rock and Arrested Development on Netflix or exploring and enjoying New York City, which has proven to provide great material for sketches. Iris: Do you have a life motto or mantra? Why is it important to you? Jessica: “Work hard, play hard.” It’s important to me to put forth 110% into following my dreams, while also taking time to enjoy my family, friends, and just life. --- Image courtesy of Ms. Lamour.

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