Sandra Valls can make anything funny. On the way to Boston for a show with fellow comic Mimi Gonzalez, the duo managed to make the drive part comedy — by disposing of a bag of sex toys along the way, leaving items tucked away on aptly named streets that made them giggle like elementary school students.
While Valls has been known to be dirty in her stand-up performances, the out comic is deeper than that. She’s one of four comics taking part in Showtime’s Pride: Gay & Lesbian Comedy Slam special, airing June 2. Bruce Villance hosts and Valls will be joined by Ugly Betty‘s Alec Mapa, Poppy Champlin and Scott Kennedy.
Valls recently took a break from the road to discuss performing for gay audiences, embarrassing moments at Pride and why visibility matters.
AfterEllen.com: How does one come to be part of a gay pride-themed Showtime comedy special?
Sandra Valls: This is my second Showtime special. The first was The Latin Divas of Comedy, which, by the way, I just finished doing a mini-tour with them this past weekend. The same producer loves me and called me and said they were doing a gay Showtime special, that’s part of the LOL Comedy Festival and asked me to participate. It’s a really great mixture of people. We have something for everyone: the gay boys, the gay girls, even me and Poppy’s comedy is different, as is Alec’s and Scott’s.
AE: How do you approach taping a gay show for a national audience? Do you approach it differently than your typical stand-up?
SV: No. Actually, when I did the Latin Divas of Comedy or any TV spot I do, I still do myself. I don’t change my comedy around at all. I explain a little bit more when I’m doing a straight room, but this one, the audience was gay, we were all just really gay and having a gay ol’ time. [Laughs]
It wasn’t different. It was a gay comedy show. It’s like when I do Latino shows, I don’t have to explain that I’m Latino, except for a little because they think I’m white or Armenian or something. But once I start talking, it’s understood. Just like with our people!
I’m just so blessed to be on Showtime again and that Showtime is still promoting the gay community. … I don’t think it’s a very unique title — Pride: Gay & Lesbian Comedy Slam. [Laughs]