5-minute interview with…………… Jaime Andrews

Jaime Andrews

Jaime has been in LA for 10 years, the entirety of which has been spent as a member of Sacred Fools, where she performed in the shows Fast & Loose, Serial Killers, Magnum Opus, Goose & Tomtom, Claire Z, La Bete, Swine Show, Baal, Forbidden Zone and Absolutely Filthy, which won the LA & NYC Fringe Festivals in addition to garnering an LA Weekly Best Ensemble Award. Jaime also served for three years as Sacred Fools’ Managing Director and on the Artistic Committee for the very successful 13th Season. For most of her time in LA, Jaime has been a working commercial actor, appearing in over 3 dozen spots. She also spent 5 years as a writer/performer on the TruTV show “World’s Dumbest,” as well as appearances on “Penn & Teller: Bullshit!,” the Disney show “Crash & Bernstein,” and in the 3 sequels to the “Baby Geniuses” franchise. As a writer, Jaime was a columnist for Backstage and a Moth GrandSlam storyteller. Other fun facts: Jaime modeled for the My Chemical Romance DVD “Life on the Murder Scene,” had a national billboard campaign for Stolichnaya, and went to the Edinburgh Fringe with Bathsheba Doran’s play 15 Minutes. You can read more about her at jaimeandrews.com

What was your inspiration for your work?
My inspiration was my life. I’ve always been haunted by my tumultuous adolescence, and I’ve written a book and a one-woman show about it, but have never been able to do anything with either. Doing this show was a way to have my friends around supporting me, and to be responsible to them, so I wouldn’t freak and back out. Because this show scares the hell out of me.

What was Cookie’s monster and how did he influence her?
My mom once told me that she felt like, as a teen, I felt I had to act on any impulse that I had, good or bad…but mostly bad. I now imagine that I had a very powerful devil on my shoulder that made me lie, cheat and steal, amongst other varied methods of self-destruction. This show was a way to personify the bad influence that lived within me.

She’s a very sympathetic character. Is that what you wanted to convey to the audience?
I’m glad she’s sympathetic, because she is really just me. I worried all the while that this “character” would be abhorrent to the audience, because I feel like she could be viewed as an entitled brat, which I was (or maybe am.) I’m glad to hear she comes off sympathetic, and I suppose that’s because I dealt with her with utmost honesty. I think it is that honesty that people are responding to.

At the end, many cast members had their monster on a leash. What advice would you give to someone who’s trying to deal with their own monster?
I truly wish I knew how to deal with monsters. I still deal with mine every day. It came very close to not letting me do this show. I would say to separate your dark thoughts and dismiss them, as I have been told to do, but I know how easy that is to say, and how hard it is to actually execute. My best advice would be to stay busy and create things…that seems to be a way to keep the monster at bay.

What do you have coming up next?
I honestly have nothing planned. Doing this show was a bit of an “all or nothing” move, and I figured I would devise a plan based on how it turned out. Hopefully I will get to continue doing commercials, and I’d love for my tv and film opportunities to increase. But since I can’t count on those things, I’ve always considered writing an adaptation of Dostoevsky’s “The Idiot” and I have a bunch of old Super-8 tapes of my sister that I was planning to make into a documentary, but we’ll see if I can actually enact these plans. If my monster lets me.