Margaret Cho was born and raised in San Francisco. She started writing jokes as a means to escape bullying and began performing comedy professionally at age 16. By her 20s, she became a national celebrity. A versatile woman, she is a comedian, fashion designer, author, actress and singer-songwriter. In the last five years, she has played Terri Lee on Drop Dead Diva, a legal assistant who is comedic, resourceful and dramatic. She was also a contestant on Dancing with the Stars in 2010.
Margaret is starting 2013 with a string of tours to promote her comedy, MOTHER. This brand of comedy present offers up an nontraditional look at motherhood and our perception of maternal figures and strong women in queer culture. Check out her tour dates.
You have been involved in a range of projects. Which one best encompasses your motto in life?
To me they are all the same. I think just take all things on, and do your best at them. There is no one day more important than another, no one job that is more or less than another. Everything is the same, and I want to do it all as well as I can.
What does it mean to be an Asian American?
For me, it is everything, and then only part. I don’t know who I am without my heritage, but I also don’t know what it is like outside it. It influences everything I do, but then again, since it does, I guess maybe it influences nothing, because it’s always there, it’s never there. Very Buddhist.
Has the portrayal of women in the media changed since you first appeared on screen? If so, in what way?
I don’t know. I am not sure. I don’t think so. I think there are not enough women’s voices, not enough women speaking their truth, and I have always thought this, and continue to think this.
What does it mean to be a leader?
I guess it means you try to give a good example, which part of that is about being a good follower. So the best leader is the best follower.
If you could give advice to your past self what would it be?
Photo courtesy of William Morris Agency.