Rising Star Chelsea London Lloyd: “Let’s start a movement to text or email a person a compliment every week”

Text or email a person a compliment every week. Don’t ask them anything, don’t have a hidden agenda. Just say something nice about their personality or recent project. See what happens 🙂 Chelsea London Lloyd is an actor and comedian from Novato, CA, near San Francisco. She was recently seen in a national commercial for […]

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Text or email a person a compliment every week. Don’t ask them anything, don’t have a hidden agenda. Just say something nice about their personality or recent project. See what happens 🙂

Chelsea London Lloyd is an actor and comedian from Novato, CA, near San Francisco. She was recently seen in a national commercial for KFC, as well as appearances on “Schooled (ABC) and “Barry” (HBO). She has done dozens of viral sketches, commercials and parodies for Alaska Airlines (5M views and on all flights), AwesomenessTV, Snapchat, Buzzfeed, Fullscreen, and Verizon go90 to name a few. She had her own show for one year at Verizon go90 and has been a comedy host for things like Macy’s Pre-Prom Party Live!, Star Wars, and Hot Wheels. Lloyd performed in the west coast premiere of My Big Gay Italian Funeral (Winner of Best Ensemble at the Valley Theatre Arts Awards 2018) and the Los Angeles tour of Guilty Parties (Jewish Women’s Theatre.) She’s on a comedic rap team and does stand-up around town at clubs including the Laugh Factory-Hollywood, The Comedy Store Hollywood, The Comedy Store La Jolla, Flappers, The Alamo, and festivals like SF SketchFest 2019, US Comedy Competition x Golden Artists Ent Semi-Finalist 2019, OC Comedy Festival | Best of Fest 2018.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

Igrew up with two sick parents — my dad had ALS and my mom had breast cancer. He was paralyzed and she was bald…so needless to say, it was interesting! Witnessing their journeys was a large, defining aspect of my life and much of the reason as to why I have become who I am, and why I used and use comedy to laugh through the pain.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

My first audition was at age 5 for Beauty and the Beat, kids musical. I used a French accent for some reason. The show wasn’t French. I was cast as Sebastian the French Cat. I was hooked. I did about 3 shows a year from then on until age 18 where I studied Theatre at USC. I always was obsessed with and cast in comedic roles, and it kind of just went on from there!

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

Probably witnessing the ups and downs of the business, and always being surprised as to how things unfold. I have tested for some shows that I thought I would get but didn’t. My “almost” resume is interesting in that sense! Having that lead to standup comedy and this podcast is interesting as I never thought I would have done either. When my mom’s breast cancer came back a few years ago, I knew that I had to do something to help others… at that point I just had so much experience around illness it was kind of the natural next step. I hope that my podcast can help others learn more about their grief, and remind people that a lot of people have lost someone even though it absolutely doesn’t feel like it.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

I assumed things were going to just “happen” a lot faster than they were. Nobody owes you anything! I would set goals that I realistically was unable to accomplish on my own. I wholeheartedly recommend setting goals that you CAN accomplish without getting a green light from anyone else. For instance, committing to writing a certain amount of pages a week, writing XYZ scripts by the end of the year, releasing a sketch or episode every week or month…these are goals you can track and therefore that is how you can measure your own success.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

My podcast, DYING OF LAUGHTER is really exciting for me! Interviewing guests who have lost a parent or sibling is extremely meaningful and I’m grateful to share their stories. I’m also writing a film where a girl in college has a mom with breast cancer and it’s super funny — yet poignant. I’ll be releasing a web series later this year, too. And just continuing to hone my standup and open for bigger comics and do more cities, etc! Coming up I’ll be hosting the first standup show partnered with the Young Survivors Coalition on March 6th in LA, LaughFest in the midwest on March 13th, Facebook Rants at the Comedy Store on April 10th and a few shows in NYC and SF later this spring.

I’m very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

  1. If we don’t see other perspectives on screen, we won’t be as aware of their perspectives in real life. There are ALL kinds of people in this world, and they all deserve a voice.
  2. Our culture responds to what is presented to us. While yes, we need to make an effort to WRITE and CREATE more diverse stories, we also will benefit from the top-down deliberately choosing and seeking out these stories and thus inspire more people to write and create them. I hope that larger studios and conglomerates greenlight more diverse stories this year asap.
  3. People come to be entertained. They stay to be inspired. Let’s inspire and educate others in our industry through our entertainment, and it’s a win/win.

From your personal experience, can you recommend three things the community/society/the industry can do help address some of the diversity issues in the entertainment business?

  1. It sounds silly, but even re-tweeting and commenting on accounts that address and empower representation CAN make a difference. Using your voice in this way to show people you are interested in what their accounts have to say is absolutely noticed. I like #RepresentHer.
  2. Support box office sales with women-driven and diversity-driven content. Buy the ticket, the download, the track, the merchandise of the projects that are making headway.
  3. Considering positively influencing your own community with one small task at a time. I recently hosted an event in LA for 50 people to discuss breast health, and it felt really good! It wasn’t easy, but I knew taking this action would be worthwhile. What is one thing you can do in your community this year?

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

  1. Support others. Remember that not every month is going to be all about you. As artists, we have ups and downs. Be aware that some months are about going inwards, supporting others, and prepping for your outwards/busy months to come. It can be challenging but remind yourself that you are on the right path and try not to let your negative thoughts completely take over.
  2. Take action. When I am feeling down, taking action is key for me. Even putting something on my calendar that I’m going to do next week or next month is inspiring as a means to an end of something to look forward to.
  3. Your time will come. It’s painful, but it’s true. Taking care of your physical and mental health is crucial when you are in this business, as you will have months or even years or chunks of years where it’s a slow roll. Take care of not just the stressors but the stress itself. Stress is a physiological response in the body and needs to be addressed and handled. Working out, walks, meditation, or sitting quietly for spurts here and there are necessary.
  4. Compare yourself to YOU. Again, I’m huge with goal setting. If you can accomplish the goals that you set out to complete for yourself, then you are winning. It’s hard not to look at other people — really hard — but if you finish your own tasks then you are in control of what you CAN control, and that deserves to be honored and celebrated.

5. You’re f*cking amazing. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Be gentle with yourself. I think it’s wise to commit to one “big” or “bigger” project each year, and then break up your action steps into quarters.

Consider releasing or prepping 2–4 smaller projects throughout the year that precise and doable, as opposed to getting overwhelmed by taking everything on at once. You can do it all but not all at one time!!

You are exactly where you are meant to be.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Text or email a person a compliment every week. Don’t ask them anything, don’t have a hidden agenda. Just say something nice about their personality or recent project. See what happens 🙂

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

Brian Patacca is an amazing career coach — he helped guide me to where I am today. Everyone needs a coach or therapist at some point. We absolutely cannot get through life by ourselves! Elisa Rothstein took a chance on me, and I ended up getting to co-host a digital talk for a year which was a great experience. Bill Hader technically approved me when I did Barry (HBO.) A very small role but finding out I booked it was one of the best days of my life! I am grateful to these people and so many more.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

“If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.” -Thomas Jefferson

I think we all — myself included — get caught up in our routines, our fear, our “norms” and it can feel scary and isolating to consider pivoting in some way. This quote reminds me that trying new things not only could be an answer…but IS the answer.

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

JONATHAN VAN NESS. I am so energized by his actions, words, and overall demeanor. He is the true definition of what it means to be an icon. I am so proud of him and excited for his success! He shares openly and honestly about his personal and professional journeys, is willing to help others, shares his political views despite what people may think about him, and is following his own dreams around comedy and gymnastics/ice-skating. He is the full package! And definitely my dream guest for the 100th episode of my podcast… one day :).

How can our readers follow you on social media?

This was fun, thanks!

@_ChelsWhoElse_ & @DyingOfLaughter_Podcast

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