Ana Gasteyer Biography


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Birth Name: Ana Gasteyer
Born: 05/04/1967
Birth Place: Washington, Washington D.C., USA


Born May 4, 1967 in Washington, DC, Ana Kristina Gasteyer earned considerable professional theatrical and comedic experience in a variety of productions, including playing the famed housekeeper Alice in the national tour of the popular stage show "The Real Live Brady Bunch." A member of the famed improv group The Groundlings, Gasteyer booked a fun cameo in 1995 as a customer menaced by "The Soup Nazi" on an especially memorably episode of "Seinfeld" (NBC, 1989-1998) but achieved breakout fame the following year when she landed a cast slot on "Saturday Night Live" (NBC, 1975- ). Showing zero vanity and a killer, go-for-broke comedic instinct, Gasteyer quickly distinguished herself as one of the all-time great impersonators on the long-running series with brilliant impressions of over-composed popular icons including a deliciously twisted take on Martha Stewart. A musician and trained singer, Gasteyer often essayed vocalist characters, including painfully earnest folk singer Cinder Calhoun and pop diva Celine Dion ("zee greatest singer in zee world!"). The former performance earned the actress an in-character spot on the real-life female folk tour Lilith Fair in 1998, while the latter impersonation landed her an in-character spot on the special "VH1 Divas Live '99" as well as several winking appearances on the famously good-natured Dion's subsequent tours.

Appearing on the show during an era of increased gender equality, Gasteyer's success as an all-around comedic force helped send another nail into the notorious "SNL" "boys' club" reputation. Quickly becoming a mainstay thanks to her talent at revealing the wackiness behind unnaturally earnest characters, Gasteyer created such unforgettable comedic gems as Molly Shannon's deceptively mild-mannered "Delicious Dish" NPR radio co-host and the over-enunciating middle school music department singer Bobbi Mohan-Culp, who along with husband Marty (Will Ferrell), presents surprisingly intense medleys of butchered popular songs. During her reign on "SNL," Gasteyer racked up an impressive slew of TV guest spots on the era's top sitcoms as well, including a sharp spot as a sexy nanny who takes charge of David Spade's man-child on "Just Shoot Me!" (NBC, 1997-2003), as well as small film roles, such as a funny turn as Nixon's shockingly agile secretary Rose Mary Woods in the political parody comedy "Dick" (1999).

Gasteyer next stole scenes in the Penelope Cruz farce "Woman on Top" (2000) and in Nancy Meyers's Mel Gibson fantasy "What Women Want" (2000). In real-life, she became pregnant in late 2001, and continued to perform on "SNL" while pregnant. But after giving birth in June 2002, she opted not to return to the grind of the series. Friend and fellow "SNL" cast member Tina Fey gifted Gasteyer with the role of the anthropologist mother to the socially naïve Cady Heron (Lindsay Lohan) in the influential smash "Mean Girls" (2004). The actress then played Mae, a marijuana-addicted moll, in the tongue-in-cheek "Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical" (2005), but turned her focus to musical theater, wowing critics and fans with her performances as Mrs. Peachum in "The Threepenny Opera" and as Elphaba in "Wicked." She reprised the latter role on Broadway, and continued to maintain an acclaimed presence treading the boards. Back onscreen, Gasteyer notched a comedic cameo in Diane English's long-delayed remake of "The Women" (2008) and reunited with many of her talented fellow female "SNL" alumnae for the Emmy-winning, highly-rated Betty White Mother's Day special in 2010. Gasteyer recurred as a quirky judge on "The Good Wife" (CBS, 2009- ) and played a mayor in Tyler Perry's family dramedy "We the Peeples" (2011). Fans were delighted when it was announced that the talented actress had landed her most prominent sitcom role thus far, recurring as an overachieving, alpha suburbanite on the highly anticipated sitcom "Suburgatory" (ABC, 2011- ).

By Jonathan Riggs




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