Home' LOTL : SepOct16 Contents 30 Lesbians On The Loose Magazine • lotl.com
Cho’s gracing our shores again with her critically-acclaimed, stand-up
show, Psycho. We were lucky enough to catch up with her and to hear all
“In Psycho, I talk a lot about sexuality and my own move towards revulsion
about sex, when I used to be really sex positive and now I’m just suddenly
grossed out by it,” Cho explains to LOTL. “It’s actually a really hilarious topic,”
she laughs. It’s about race, it’s about sexuality, in all its forms, and it’s about
overcoming sexual abuse, which I’m a survivor of,” she goes on to explain.
In Psycho, Cho addresses feelings, ways to heal, and mechanisms through
which to cope with one’s own experiences of sexual abuse. Cho is a
master at using the art of comedy to draw attention to issues, which are
often uncomfortable to address, and she is particularly excited about using
Psycho as a vehicle to discuss sexual abuse.
“Being able to talk about it is a helpful way to heal, to collectively heal, and
to find out whether it’s affected you directly or not, it’s a really important
matter to discuss,” Cho tells us.
We discuss the challenges of writing and performing a show that deals
with such important, serious and delicate subject matter and Cho explains
that the key is to know what you’re doing.
“I hope I know what I’m doing; I’ve been doing comedy for over thirty years.
So I have some knowledge of how to go about using energy in a show that
goes into very deep and difficult subjects. I think that’s a true art form and
that comedy can really do something socially and can really change the
world. I wholeheartedly believe it, so I think I just rely on my skills.”
Cho views each of her shows as a unique experience for her audience.
She emphasises making every performance as perfect as possible and
mentions that she’s a complete perfectionist in every facet of her work. “I’m
become more adaptable to travel and tailoring my shows for wherever I
am. I think it’s really important to be able to make changes to reflect the
audience where you are,” she told LOTL.
She’s had a longstanding love affair with Australia and has been over here
several times with various shows. She talks about how much she loves
Perth and Melbourne (sorry Sydney, we’re sure it was just an oversight) and
how excited she is to bring her show to Australian audiences.
Cho identifies as an out and proud bisexual and has been an active
member and supporter of the queer community throughout her illustrious
career. She sees her points of difference and self-identity as strengths that
have never hindered her career.
“I’m bisexual and I’m Asian American, I’m a feminist and a political
progressive so it was very gratifying to get a place in mainstream comedy.”
On whether she found it difficult navigating her sexuality and identity
publicly as a comedian early on in her career, Cho doesn’t feel like it
presented challenges for her. “I was always so different, there was no way
that I could change who I was. There’s no way that I could just suddenly
be a straight, white man, which is what comedy was, and still is to some
Cho grew up in a “really gay, sex-positive environment in San Francisco” and
attributes a lot of her development in comedy to doing a lot of fundraisers
for AIDS. As such, the LGBTIQ community is very dear to her heart and she
always wanted to perform comedy that would attract the community to
Our conversation on sexual identity inevitably ventures into the realm of
marriage equality and Cho is incredibly confident that Australia’s time is
just around the corner. “I believe that really soon, gay marriage will happen
there because you can’t let New Zealand f*ck you like that.” Cho’s right—
she knows exactly how to adapt to her audiences.
The Psycho Tour is coming very soon to a city near you and it’s a show that
you simply don’t want to miss.
Margaret Cho is one of the most accomplished
media personalities in the U.S. today. While
she’s best known for her cutting edge stand-up
comedy, she is also an actress, fashion designer,
author and singer-songwriter. She’s earned herself
a worldwide following based on her razor-sharp
wit and her ability to address and critique social
and political problems using comedy as a vehicle.
By Kirsty Webeck
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