YBY ep 248: Gary Miceli and Noel Gibson discuss creativity during the pandemic and their new comedy series, Freshman Circus.
This week on Yes But Why, we chat with writer/actor Gary Miceli and comedian/actor Noel Gibson.
Gary Miceli and Noel Gibson came on the podcast to promote their new comedy series, Freshman Circus, streaming now on YouTube. Freshman Circus is a comedy web series about navigating freshman year in college in the world of online classes.
Freshman Circus premiered on January 20th . New episodes come out every Wednesday!
Actor, writer, producer and New York native Gary Miceli is an avid film and television lover. He is a graduate of Five Towns College where he earned a BFA in film & video studies. Early on, Gary started acting of course, and with that came his discovery of his ability to do different characters. He then developed that skill for mimicry into a strength, allowing him a talent for switching from one character to another in rapid succession. He took this rare ability to the stage in his one-man show based on “Star Wars: A New Hope”, playing over 30 characters. He eventually would like to bring his voiceover talents to animation as well as continuing in front of the camera.
Noel Gibson is an award-winning actor and an alumni improviser of Upright Citizens Brigade and iOWest. She still performs (as regularly as she can) with her all-women sketch team called Women of Color Anonymous. Noel was also a host on “PopFuzionTV” where she interviewed many celebrities including Terry Crews, Heather McDonald and Academy Award Winning Producer and Artist Common. With hundreds of acting jobs to her credit, she has worked in Film, Television, Theater, Radio, Commercials, Voiceover, and more. Noel is currently starring on a new kid show called “The Yippee Show” that runs on the Yippee platform, TBN network, and Youtube.
In this episode, we talk about what drew us all to comedy. Noel and I are decidedly entertainers at heart. Gary is a strong storyteller, sharing not only his own stories but collecting stories from around the world and sharing them!
Noel tells us about how she climbed to great heights to make music videos with her friends as a kid. Gary tells us how a trip to Planet Hollywood as a kid sparked his love for film memorabilia. We discuss how our improv training has helped us to work on collaborative projects! This was a great chat with some top notch creators!
Support Gary and Noel in Freshman Circus! Available now on YouTube! New episodes come out every Wednesday!
Support Gary by looking out for his forthcoming movie, “Fandemic.”
Support Noel by watching her kids show, “The Yippee Show!”
Yes But Why Podcast is a proud member of the HC Universal Network family of podcasts. Visit us at HCUniversalNetwork.com to join in on the fun.
This episode of Yes But Why podcast is sponsored by audible – get your FREE audiobook download and your 30 day free trial at http://www.audibletrial.com/YESBUTWHY.
This episode of Yes But Why is also sponsored by PodcastCadet.com. Go to PodcastCadet.com and put in offer code YBY20 to get 20% off your first consultation!
(production notes: recorded Zoom meeting on 1/25/2021)
TRANSCRIPT by Otter.ai
Hello, Yes But Why listeners, this is your host, Amy Jordan. Welcome to Yes But Why episode 248 – my chat with writer/actor Gary Miceli and comedian/actor Noel Gibson. But first, let’s talk about our sponsors. Today’s episode is sponsored by audible. Get your FREE audiobook download and your 30 day free trial at audibletrial.com/YESBUTWHY. Guys, my superfave, Keegan Michael Key, just came out with this audible exclusive called The History of Sketch Comedy. Are you kidding me? That’s my jam! Maybe there’s something out there that you’d love to hear about. Audible is available on most of the devices in your home. Go now to audibletrial.com/YESBUTWHY to download the app and sign up to get your free audiobook today. Our other sponsor for today’s episode is my company, PodcastCadet.com. My husband, Chris and I run the company, PodcastCadet.com. We provide advice and production help to anyone who needs it! We can give you a little push or we can help you with the production of all of your episodes! Contact us now at PodcastCadet.com and use code YBY20 to get 20% off the first service or workshop you buy! Podcast Cadet.com – helping creators navigate the waters of podcasting. This week on Yes But Why, Gary Miceli and Noel Gibson came on the podcast to promote their new comedy series, Freshman Circus. Freshman Circus is a comedy web series about navigating freshman year in college in the world of online classes. Freshman Circus is streaming now on YouTube. New episodes come out every Wednesday! In this episode, Gary, Noel and I talk about improv, ghost stories, and film memorabilia. We discuss how improv training has helped us with all of our collaborative projects! I now present to you: yes but why episode 248: Gary Miceli and Noel Gibson discuss creativity during the pandemic and their new comedy series, Freshman Circus. Enjoy! I’m Amy Jordan, and this is Yes But Why Podcast. Yeah.
Well, I grew up as a dancer. So yeah, dancing. I was in ballet and tap and the first time I was on a recital and I could see the attention that like and how it affected people. And I was only like five, I was just in love and I never like i’d since like four or five years old. My grandparents tell you I’ve always just wanted to be an entertainer. Like that, you know? I mean, they probably should have said when I came out of the womb honestly, because that’s probably child entertainment. But you know fashionably late two weeks overdue You know how it is but no like, Really? I love tap they justice up as an babylegs you know back in the day you had to be a ballet now you can just go straight into hip hop and nine you couldn’t then and and on them I think one of my first performances if I remember was we were like what is that doll that’s like see this is like before my time even like she has like red hair and yarn like Raggedy Ann or something like that. Yes. Is that what her name is? Right?
Yeah, right man.
Yeah, it is raggedy and and you know I’m like the only like raising my white side on the only black one so I was a black raggedy and and I mean yeah, did I stand out because of that probably. But I like to tell myself because I was also the best dancer
yeah yeah, that’s right.
Yeah, but does big I’ll never forget I just put it like that stick blush on my cheeks just bright red like horrific like that is not meant to be on someone like me But yeah, I loved it. So from then on I I have a video I would like I did my grandparents like recorder I would video I’d make my friends come over and I was wanting to make like videos and yeah.
What kind of videos did you make like home films, or were you guys doing music videos?
Why music videos. I was like the hot thing you know, everyone want to be MTV somehow. And like I just remember that if any of these videos ever got like seen, I would be mortified because there’s like one of me and my friends like in a hot tub. And then making those were like Star sunglasses and I’m like, you were like literally like eight years old y’all. Like Yeah, like, see you. I couldn’t even tell you like a genie in a bottle. Who knows? At the time I thought it really meant a genie in a bottle. Totally not. But um, yeah, no one else do that.
I mean, I definitely made a ridiculous amount of videos, but I’m glad that technology no longer watch them for sure. So with that, like, I’m like, oh, man, that
would be mortified. Like, I remember my grandpa coming home one time just screaming because I’m on top of a roof. And I thought it would be crazy. Because I wanted to get a bird’s eye view of this shot. I’m making my friends like video and I’m literally on our road. And I have like Christmas lights and the runway. Yeah. Yeah, God.
I mean, clearly you didn’t break your leg. The story didn’t end. When I broke my leg.
Yeah, right. You know, I feel like that would be an epic story plot. No, it was just I had to get down. You know, I had to get that shot, though. You know, just like any shoe filmmaker. Dude. It’s
amazing that you like put the effort in to like, get that shot. You’re going to the roof. You guys.
Were doing this. We
are sorry. Yes. Oh, we thought we were so serious. Wow, very real.
That’s so fun. So fun. Now Gary, did you associate with the the attention getting? Were you into it? What happened to you? What was your story?
My story. Um, there was a lot of moments that I figured you know, this is right. But I think one of the one of the ones that was clearest to me, was I had to been had to be like six or seven years old. And I went into Planet Hollywood in New Jersey. And if you guys know that restaurant, there’s memorabilia and movie stuff all around you. And as soon as I went there, I said, this is this is home. This This is it. For me. This is this is everything. And I said this is this is my life. And that’s where we began.
And that’s where you just pitched your tent. And that’s where you stayed since right? Yeah.
Hey, man, that’s great. Is your house filled with just memorabilia? Like, oh, yeah, you have like, yeah, like a boat hanging on the wall and like, street signs. And
yeah, I have a quite a bit of stuff. I just got two scripts from the different back show that were used on set.
Oh, my God. Oh, you’re
that. Yeah. Also, if you go on amazon.com, I wrote a book about how to start collecting Hollywood memorabilia. On Amazon Prime.
Gary, how am I not known?
Yeah. And the book, but I’m excited that, that this is like why you have it right like that? Yeah. Oh, cool.
Yeah. Yeah. My second book is coming out. It’s in the next three weeks. gonna come out on Amazon as well. Okay. Remember, Bill, you know, this book that I’m writing is about ghost stories that people told me from around the world. So people in like, England told me a ghost story. And people in Switzerland and people in London and people in New York and people all around telling me these ghost stories. And I said, maybe there’s some truth to those because there’s literally people from all around the world experiencing this stuff. Look, I tell people I don’t know if it’s true or not. I wasn’t there. So but maybe there is.
Whoa, yeah. I love these two separate totally different like book situations. First question I want to say so. I’m so into both of them. Okay, let’s go into memorabilia memorabilia. super interesting that that was like a thing that you were into art. Do you then Okay, so because you’re interested in this memorabilia? Do you collect all the like stuff from projects that you yourself work on? Do you have like a box where it’s like, this is from this film that I did? This is from this play that I did? Like, do you collect stuff as you do your own projects? No, I
don’t. I don’t have all the scripts for the show. We just worked on freshmen circuit. They’re all in the pile somewhere on my desk somewhere. But other than that, it’s I don’t really collect from the things I do. Um, because I figured I was there. I experienced it. I don’t need anything from it.
What about the fans Gary Vee out there trying to fly the script someday. Van Dyck scripts, you know, that. That was definitely not expecting anyone would want to buy it when they wrote it. I mean, like, think of the people writing different ideas. Van Dyck, right is people who are sitting around like what is Dick Van Dyke want to say? All right, let’s write this. Right And now that guy, likely guy, his words are like something that you’re like excited to have like that’s
As a writer I find that very great.
Yeah, it’s um, funny story I do. I’m sure you you know the show the monsters. Ah, well, I got a script from the monsters and I said, Butch Patrick is so alive. I said he’s still alive. He’s signing art. I wonder if I can get him to sign it. So whatever. I put it in the bed. I put in my envelope. I go to the post office. And the guy goes, much Patrick, I go Yeah, it’s just something from the monsters I want him to sign for me. He goes I’m surprised you even know who the hell he is. I said I said I could see that.
is this Monsters Inc? are a different monsters.
because this is the 60s television show The monsters?
Oh, okay. I
have no idea about Monsters Inc.
The people that wrote that are definitely still alive.
Yeah, they’re definitely everyone is from from the movie as I’m sure well, well awake right now. Even they’re doing okay.
They’re pretty good.
Yeah, no, I like the idea. That wasn’t your postman that was giving you a hard time. Post man’s like, yeah, you
know, this is Yeah, he looked. He looked at me. I said, Yeah, that this I’m just getting Butch patrie to sign my script. You know, he’s still alive. And he goes, you know who he is? I said, Yeah, I the only thing I really watched his 60s and 70s television. Like, I don’t like Jimmy Fallon. I prefer Johnny Carson when I watch him every night. Like, and he just looked at me like I five heads.
No, man, I hear you. I am so into. You know, one of the my husband and I every night we watched the show mash the 70s television show about the Korean War. Yeah, none of the references of anything makes any sense. I mean, does now because we’ve like watched it enough that I’m like, I should probably look that up. So I know what they’re talking about. But like super into it. Like I even watch old game shows on buzzer started as a channel. And all of a sudden, I was like, tell me everything. I want to watch Match Game with like, super old like, probably everyone’s dead. But I love how like sassy and wild. They are from the 60s and 70s. Oh, man. Yeah, there’s some fun about that. Who knows? I mean, it’s I really liked this. That that idea. Also, by the way, do you live in? Do you live in New Jersey or New York? New York? Okay. Because I was like, either in New Jersey or New York, where your postman is giving you SAS? Like, I was like, Who is this dude? he’s all like, yeah, I’ll deliver your mail. But let me give you some opinions about your life.
Like, yeah, his name is Norman and I said, you know, Norman and the girl from my, I said that girl from my dream a genius. Oh, she’s 89 and he goes, Oh, she was dead. And I was like, No, she’s still around. She still does convention that it goes Oh, okay.
Can you start a podcast with him where you just tell him random things and he gives you like one or two word answers back
that are really thin, really tall. And he seems to be like, if you gave him if you gave him anything he looked at you know, okay.
Did man contribute a ghost story to the new book? No, he
did not. I wish he did. No. I asked him for a ghost story. He looked at me go go. It was spooky. Is that uh, yeah. Nope. Sorry. Can
you believe it? Yep.
Yep. That’s, that’s normally when I always say okay, thank you so much, Norman. Norman. See you later he goes, Okay. Doesn’t say goodbye to CNN.
I’m telling you. This guy’s a character waiting to be written. I’ll tell you, Norman, the postman. He’s a good dude. Let’s sidetrack to tell me about the ghost stories book. Because I find it fascinating that you not only like are calling these stories together to make a book. But that, but that like people are just like coming at you with these stories. They’re like, they’re like, hey, Gary, nice to meet you. A super fun spending time with you. By the way. Have I told you about the ghost in my life? How does that come up? How is that a thing that you even get involved in?
Well, you know, I knew the good warworld especially for me was really, really muddied. Because of all these TV shows, like ghost hunters and all this stuff that you realize after a while, it’s probably fake. If things didn’t happen, they want to have a TV show kind of thing, right? So I figured I figured there has to be something out there. So I went on some Facebook groups that have all ghost stories, and people post like around the clock saying, This is what happened to me. And I messaged some of them. I said, I would love to use your story for a book. And they said, Absolutely. And when you read these stories, and they, I always say, just email me as much as much information as you can and, and they come from all walks of life, poor, rich. Some of them don’t speak English. Some of them speak as well. I mean, some of them from our London to know from New York, and I really thought that maybe there is something here. I mean, there’s so many people telling me all these wild things that I don’t, I don’t know if all of them can be making it up.
So is that the creative form that you find yourself in? Like, are you often calling stories from, you know, experiences people have in life? Is that where you get your ideas like, Hi, Elsie, and to notice that this is happening to a lot of people, let’s explore this as a writer as a creator.
Is that inspiring? Yeah, I do like to explore that. I do love to go back to the old television, the old movies and see try to learn from them. And talk to the older people and trying to see and learn from them. But yeah, this book to me was it was my first book on this subject. And, yeah, it just really inspired me that first one came out, and he was so open. And he was like, this is really what happened to me. Like, you can believe me or not, but this is literally what happened to me. I said, you know, they don’t want anything. They just want me to listen to their story. So maybe there is maybe, who knows.
I mean, if nothing else, I think you did a service to the people who needed to tell their story for you
guys are just gonna say Yeah.
yeah, it’s tough. I find a lot of the Malala protests that I really geared towards trying to help others. Because for some of them, to me, they said it’s therapeutic mean, to relive it, to have someone here and to publish them to get it out there. I mean, it helps them. So if I can help anyone, I mean, that’s what it’s all here for.
Oh, nice. Good for you. I’m mostly here for the accolades and tell me that I’m pretty so I like that you want to help people. That’s good. That’s that’s solid. All right. No, I have a question. Do you believe in ghosts?
I believe in spirits. Okay. Okay.
Okay. Cool. Yeah. I don’t know what I believe. But I mean, I guess I probably don’t, but I’ve just never had an experience with them. Right. So to me, I’d probably be like, I’m huh. Yep. I believe it like I’m like, a thread away from being like, totally into it. But I don’t know. One of those things just like I don’t know, never happened to me.
Maybe I’ve never experienced and I don’t need to I’m not one that wants to don’t
care. Yeah, no, no, no, thank
know, like, I’m good. Like I even say like, I’m a huge God fearing woman. And I’m like, even Jesus knows not to show up. And play with me right now. Like, we’re now like, that is like another level. Like, I’m not shy. And
I know, I know
what like the worst person to show up. You’re like, No,
no, no, no,
- What are you doing? Get out of here. Right now if you’re, you’re it’s not good.
You got to tell me something. something’s about to go down. And then like, I would try to poke a hole, like, put a blanket over my head as his light beaming beyond that blind. I don’t see. I don’t know. I’m like, no, no.
No, same. I’d be like, nothing’s happening right now. There goes. Right here. I’m just floating in front of you. So Noel, let’s, I would love to chat with you. You said you got involved in dance when you were a kid. But I read your bio. And it seems like you’ve gotten involved in a lot of like comedy and film throughout your life. How did that manifest for you? Like, how did you get into that? And not only get into it, but like really start working?
I mean, how do I begin with just like 20 minutes left or something? No, I’m just um, I you know, it’s funny, like everything just kind of manifests together. Like I’ve always like, when I was younger, I’d always want to be an entertainer. There was never something specific. I just loved entertaining. But like comedy was just always a relief for me. You know, growing up small town only black friends. And you know like literally my my parents are white don’t know my blacks I’ve yet to find a lot comedy and stuff and I come from South Dakota so like very yeah a lot of ignorance racism you know good people but borderline ignorant and stuff and so like I learned at a very young age if you made fun of yourself No one can make fun of you. And yeah, I think that just kind of manifested itself and I you know, real talk I’ve never really said this out loud. I’ve always wanted to be a singer, but I just didn’t get that that talent really. And I mean, I thought I did but you know, like back in the day when you make a voicemail and be like you like recording like the song and that would be like your voicemail for your cell phone. I remember doing one with my voice thing and I was singing this like Destiny’s Child song and realized very quickly that I did not sound how I thought I sounded and that Yeah, so I think it was out the out the door but I could dance and I was like JLo like Jennifer Lopez she like perform she’s an actor. And she’s a dancer. You know? And so I think besides watching like that, you know people like that and very little fly girl on
So like all this kind of just went together and I’ve always just Yeah, I think that’s something that just really sparkled to me and being from small town there wasn’t much you could do so theater you know I fell into
it thing about comedy and singing is that if you want to you have to have talent to be a singer to sing like serious songs. But if you want to sing a song about like how there isn’t any more toilet paper left or like something funny you know you don’t have to sound good
you’re so right you’re so right like literally like musical improv and that bring it with me like that’s my son like rap freestyling which I can freestyle but like you’re so right like that’s literally it like I could I could still be in these fairytale Disney ways just in a comedic way. So yeah, I definitely fell in that in but you know, ironically enough though, all the awards which I don’t really post around and stuff that I’ve won have actually been for, like drama. Hmm.
I know it’s like get into like did you take acting classes for dramatic acting? I know that you have training in comedy in the improv world but like how what sort of education did you put into it like school or even just our otherwise workshops or whatever?
No, yes, I’m over 10 years of training and that Stanislavski train you know, so Adler and good little Meisner did not like it. don’t really care for the repeat. We all know that near me. I mean, I did it, you know, but it’s that like, I don’t use it. Yeah, I want to be completely honest. Like, yeah, but I love sans Laski, like, one I don’t like to read. I read the only like, pretty much the Holy Bible Honestly, I am an audio book person, but like the target. And the target. Real Talk is by it’s probably one of the best for actors. And but yeah, so I’m classically trained and I want a couple years in a row for oral interpretation. So I would interpret like spoken word and that so I think that and they always had the comedic side fell dead, but they didn’t have the dramatic and the teen side so I just always did that. And I’m one yeah, and one on price. I just happened to be and gotta study Shakespeare. Again, not my biggest cup of tea, but I do believe you have to you know, you need to understand it and yeah,
yeah, you’re totally gonna know Shakespeare if only just to like, chat with people sometimes, like in certain theater circles. You’re just like, what is the word, Dima? Oh, yeah.
My life we always say that like seriously, like, you are either a theater like grew like, like nerd to its finest or you’re like TV himself. And like, there’s such a broad difference of like, Oh, yeah, that’s a theatre person. They’re talking about every play. I have no idea of it’s not made into a movie. Like I would know right then and there. And oh, and you know, your sketch to Jenna. I love sketch. You know, I had a team of a team will go when they call nonnamous. And we, you know, performed at UCB had our own show and all that you know, rip you do our own show but all that kind of went out the door and and I like
active there and just experience the shutdown of the LA space.
Yes, I was one of the head Yeah. shows. Oh, yeah.
I’m so sorry. I just heard that that happened. And I was like, you know, bemoaning it with my friends online. But I didn’t actually really I mean, other than Billy Merritt. He’s the only person that I like really know that’s over there.
That’s my first improv teacher. That’s so crazy. And he only does 404 and all that now, but back in the day, not gonna age myself just a year ago, and I’m just kidding. He Yeah, like taught the 101 and two, one and I and, and because of him, I actually, like stuck into improv, you know, quicks small story, but I came here for acting and dance, mainly acting, but you know, you I pay those bills. So I would dance, you know, those in certain auditions for dancers in that. And to clarify everybody, I am a trained classical dancer, ballet tap jazz bar and hip hop, not on a pole. Got to pay me a lot more. But I came out here for acting, and that however, you know, 2013 and not like it was huge for improv, you know, it really like and UCB was really blowing up. And so I did it. Because Billy I actually stuck doing he, you know, he passed me to and said, I have a lot of talent. And I’ll never forget the one thing he said, the first day of class, which I knew I wanted to be there was like, if you want to make this a show about just you, and just do stand up, you can leave now, because this ain’t gonna be about you. And I was like, well, this is my kind of guy that did not want to do stand up, even though I do it now. But yeah, I just loved the whole team aspect and like being on the spot, and as you called out, you don’t have to be a great singer. But if you’re willing to invest, and really go all in and commit, I mean, you and your partner on there, you can go pretty far.
Not to mention the fact that, you know, the idea of improv really does help for you know, collaborative projects, like, you learn those particular skills, it can really help you when you’re working on any team project. And I mean, let’s be clear, any TV or film or Heck, even theater is a team project, you’re all meeting together to put something together and, and make it happen. So you, you know, you need those kinds of skills, and whether you use them in a onstage comedy way, or you’re using them just to kind of like, move forward and be a creative person, right?
No, you’re so right. Yeah, you’re so right. And I can’t even deny that once I really buckled into it. I mean, I got my first coast. Sorry. And I was on the Mindy Project. You’re 100%. Right. And, and yes, it was based on my acting and stuff, too. But I’ll be honest, a lot of it was my improv, was just being able to book the room, being able to, like you said, collaborate and, and and it really has helped me creatively. And personally, huh.
So right. So Gary, you’re at the helm of the project that you and Noelle are working together on the freshmen circus. What sort of collaborative projects prior to this current show that you’re working on now? Have you been a part of? Yeah.
So I started at second city and fellowship from Chicago. Yeah, it’s, I love it. It’s really wonderful and collaborative projects I love I love collaborating with others and trying to hear people’s ideas and trying to go forward with them. And improv was a big part of the project we’re doing now. You know, there were scripts every week, of course, but I wanted everyone to have faith. If they have something better to say, than the actual line, Sam said.
Did you do like a bunch of wild lines? And like, see how it went? Or did you do like the whole thing with like, the freedom to adjust?
Yeah, so we did a safety take? Or no, no, I’ll notice we did a take where it was just line word for word. And then little by little, we do one or two more takes with the same property and just going forward. And then if that if someone says something funny, I would just write it down and say, you know, let’s do it again. But say this. And yeah, we had a lot of fun. It was a lot of them probably was a lot of, it’s like a big sketch show.
Now how you it was it was you and Gary McKee that came together to put this project together. What inspired you guys to get it going?
So originally, I had come up with the idea and June of last year, I came up with the idea in June 2020. Like the like the heart of the pandemic. And then I said, Well, you know, I can’t get people together, so why not? Just try it? Do it online and try to see if we can do a zoom into the movie unfriended, if you know that movie, they did everything via zoom. It was a horror movie. And I say, you know what, maybe maybe we could do something like this. So I got a cast together and some people drop down and, and I met with aramaki via zoom. And he said, You know, I let some let’s produce this and let’s get this going. And then we got people and I got the teacher who Jessica darter, and it’s wonderful. And then Gary McKee got Noelle and Jesse and kind of just came together. And we were able to improv off each other and bounce ideas off each other. And it was it was really something. So you
guys, like, found each of you guys found different people in your individual circles? And then like, we’re like, hey, I’d love to work on a project with you want to do this fun thing? And then just put it together? That’s so fun.
Yeah, yeah, it was really, really great. And especially like with these scripts, I didn’t know if it would exactly work. Because a lot of the characters, all the characters that we wrote, were really, really specific people. And if I figure that if the wrong person was going to play one of the roles, I just didn’t think it work. And but everyone was great. And everyone came together and it just happened.
In your mind, what was the you you said, You wrote all these specific characters? Like, were you trying to capture specific people that you knew in your life? Or like, Where you going for tropes? How did you develop these characters? What are they like represent to you?
Yeah, so all the characters were characters that I personally went to school with. Yeah, and and all the characters if you see all four, but all five of us there were really at opposite ends of the spectrum. Kevin is so far away from Zeke, and Zeke is so far away from Noah, like, we are literally at the end of every corner of the room. And I said, we have to find people that can go further and to make these people. It’s like the people you don’t expect to get along and they get along.
Awesome. Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I think that there’s something fun about finding a group of people you wouldn’t expect to be friends to, to, you know, end up being friends. I think that’s the basis on tons and tons of sitcoms and stuff like that. So you’re on the right track for sure. An unlikely group of people becomes total besties. Super fun, super fun. Now, how did you connect? How did you even meet Gary McKee? Because from the sounds of it, is Gary in LA.
Yes, Gary is now I
carry on both coasts, handling the Gary’s and then getting getting different friends from either circle. But But how did you guys even meet?
So I was doing this project. And I needed we needed one more cast member. And I posted in a group on Facebook, like an acting group or something like an indie filmmaker group or something. And I said, I’m casting for this project, that would mean this. And this, this, you don’t have to come to the toll via zoom. So you’ll be safe. And I got a few people. And then Gary McKee said, here’s my reel, and look at what I do. And I looked at it, and I loved it. And I contacted him and I said, hey, let’s let’s collaborate, be a part of this thing. And then we got the cast together, then a few people dropped out. And then gurmukhi was like, You know what, I think this project is good. Let’s, let’s keep going. And, and if you want, I know people and I said Gary, like, we have to get really like really, really good I just to play these people. And he said, don’t worry. And then it became what it became.
Awesome. Man, I have totally been there putting together a project and having a bunch of people drop out. Oh, man, for years. That is like such a. I hate it. It’s my like, least favorite rite of passage in the, you know, show producers hands Handbook of like, well, you’re just gonna have to deal with that, by the way, they’re gonna walk out. I had a person one time on a sketch show that we’ve been working on for a month, quit the day before the show. I was like,
right. So I totally feel you. Thank goodness, you found a good pal and Gary McKee was able to connect you with some people to make this to put it together. Now, did you guys you came up with the idea in June 2020. I mean, clearly, you’re thinking ahead to this unusual experience that college students are encountering like now, where they’re doing so have like an online situation was that? Clearly I have no idea. I’m assuming no, both of you are older than college. So you’re not in college right now. But like, what made you even think of these kinds of characters? Like what made you want to write a story for this group of people that are going to have to go through this sort of online education thing?
So I was finishing college I just finished in August reading. And what I was because my, my second last semester started in quarantine. Yeah, they said, they said, don’t come back to school. I said, Well, I’m almost done. Anyway, they said, don’t go back to school, set home. And we’ll have this in zoom. And, and when we all went to zoom, we all had our cameras on and everyone just looked so weird. Everyone just looked like someone was at a robe. Someone have the dog on the lap, somewhere, like their mom was in the background. And I was like, there’s something here. And then, um, I was creating the idea and kind of thinking of the characters. And then in June, I was almost done with college. And then June, July ish. I went online, and I found the Greek Arabic key, and we have to get this together. And I said, Gary, I said, Look, if we don’t put the show out, now, I don’t think it’s gonna be relevant in a year, because in a year, who knows if we’ll be back to normal.
So you guys were looking at it. And you’re like, I don’t know if this is going to be relevant in a year. And then did that just light the fire under your butt?
Yes, sort of. Yeah, I’ve wanted to do this kind of show for a long time. But I said, you know, if we don’t get this done now, no, my thing about this right now it’s 125 2021. In a year, will we be in quarantine? i? I probably don’t think so. So I don’t know if they’re doing online. So I know, I know what I turn on the news that keeps saying they’re going to have more and more people going to school. So I’m knocking
on all the wood around me, because I will not be in quarantine in one year, please. That would be super helpful to my life. But like, Yeah, no, I mean, you know, what’s interesting is that, I think there’s going to be four projects that are about this kind of thing. Like, I think there’s something to this time that we all went through, right. And there’s something to the unifying nature of it, where like, it wasn’t just the US that went through it, or it wasn’t just North America that went through it. It was all like a globe happening, like, one all at once. And it really like, I mean, personally, I was able to connect with people from across the world and just be like, you know, how’s it going for you? And we are both having the same experience. And it’s like, how am I talking to this, like, 35 year old girl in India? And like, we are the same somehow like, but, you know, I think so What I mean to say is, I’m glad that you made it, I’m glad you have it, like coming out now. And I think it’s right on point, you know, definitely people have gone through what you are enacting, you know, this sort of like freshman orientation, but online so much, right. And that’s got to be weird. And I’m looking forward to the rest of the episodes and how weird and wild they get after the first one that I watched. But, you know, like, I think that what’s going to happen with this kind of content? Is that, yeah, in a, in a year or two, it’s people aren’t going to want to watch it. But give it more time. And then people are going to come back to it. Yeah. And it’d be like, Oh, you remember? Because like you like even Gary, we’ve been talking about how like, you and I are like into shows that were made in the like 60s or 70s. What? Who knew that? like nobody who was making mash was like, I sure hope somebody in 2021 watches this, like no one was thinking that right? But yeah, there’s gonna be a Renaissance. So like, Don’t for yourself for like you, Gary. And you know, me, everyone who’s listening. Like, if you have stuff ideas that are like, related to this time, even if you’re like, nobody wants to do that, write it, get it done. Put it out there have it because in five years, in 10 years, we’re gonna be like, oh, man member, remember that thing that we all went through? Let’s look at it. Let’s check it out. And then we’re gonna like get into all of the like quarantine stuff. Because there’s been tons of stuff that was made purely because we’re all trying to be creative and like, get it out of ourselves. Like, I can’t even believe it gets You’re a senior in college had your last semester in this freaking insanity. Like, that’s just like, so like, but that that means so much to like, it was such a big deal in your life, like someday you’re gonna go somewhere, and you’re gonna be like, No but but like in the future like in 10 years, you’re gonna be they’re gonna be like, oh, when you graduate from college, I’m like, I graduated in 2008. And they’ll be like, Oh, no way. Like, I
always think about like the history books, you know, like how much we haven’t memorized? Can you guys imagine like how many events they’re gonna have to memorize in 2020? Like, seriously? The Zoom? The the COVID outbreak, the Pfizer vaccine, right? Yeah, the vaccine, the fires, the protesting. Yeah, Trump is no longer in office.
Excuse me, I’m here. I’ve created the most amazing vaccine, tremendous vaccine,
not to mention all the other insane crap like the murder Hornets and the like,
Betty White’s birthday,
I get you, Amy. And how many people passed away? Like, I totally know what you’re saying. It’s gonna have this, like, this style jet thing that everyone will look back on and be like, Oh, I remember that. Yeah,
I agree. Now we’re in it. It’s a perfect time for this to come out. Because people are like, Oh, man, check this out. Does this or does this not look exactly like what happened to us in the fall? Right. So like, they’re gonna be into it now? Because they’re in it. But in a few years, like, yeah, maybe in a year, people are like, no, no thanks. But like, give it a little bit and they’re going to be coming back. They’re going to be loving the little zoom looks that we all are getting into, right? I mean, I I thought you guys did a great job as far as like, because like, I know that I’ve looked at 1000 zoom shows at this point. But when I watched it, even though I knew what was zoom, I still didn’t know at first, I was just like, Oh, this interesting. And then I was like, Oh, I see what’s going on. Oh, fun. Okay, cool. You know what I mean? But like, so what I mean, what I mean to say is like, it looked good. And like everybody was well lit, and like, you know, it wasn’t like your class Gary, where you’re like looking at the people and you’re like, is that gonna get a bathroom been? Like, if a guy’s got a bathrobe on your show? It’s fancy. And it’s also well lit. And I can see that bathrobe. Right. You know what I mean? Like so? I mean, it looks really good. You guys did a good job putting production value into it, for sure.
Thank you very much. Yeah. And
it was really fun. It was. It was a crazy, different experience. I mean, for me personally, even like, you know, I’m, I’m blessed to be on a show right now I kid show in that. And I’ve been on like TV shows in that, but I’ve never done like at home aside self tapes. So it was kind of cool to like, be halfway naked half the time and no one knew.
Sure. Yeah, absolutely. I’m really just wearing weird shorts at all.
Yeah, right. Right. Just kidding. But no, but really, though, like, I wouldn’t have like, we would change different quick tops. You know what I mean? Like it was it was interesting. And like, yeah, it was a cool experience. And I got to meet everybody. And I mean, I knew Jesse and Gary the other Gary. I call them the other Gary. Gary.
whoever you’re with, you just refer to guys the other guy.
Like the black or the Italian 100% 100 million. I was gonna say that, but I don’t you know, I want to broaden it just in case. You know?
What? I mean, if I did one of those tests, I’m sure would come back. 98% this one 1.1% is point 5% that so? No,
I get you. I feel you, you know. Yeah, no, I get that crazy joke. But yeah, no, it was cool. It was it was interesting. And it was a blessing to be on and it was Yeah, it was it was definitely fun to play Ingrid and be the vegan lover who obviously lost it. Do I get into spoilers? No, I can’t I can’t say anything. Right. Good.
No, I don’t. I can’t there’s a spoiler, but I’m a vegan lover. You’re a wacky gal. And it’s a fun character. For sure. For sure. It seemed it seemed like it was real fun. I mean, everybody got some juiciness to dig into for sure. You know? Yeah. And I love I love it. It’s based on people that you really know, Gary, like, that’s so much better. Like if you’re like, Oh, well, I just thought these kinds of people would be around. No, no, these are real humans. You’re like potentially gonna watch it and be like, wait a minute. Does that mean he joins me? Oh my gosh. So funny. So you’re the show is out on on YouTube and Amazon Prime now, and they’re being released once a week, is that correct?
Yes, every Wednesday,
every Wednesday, a new episode comes out. And it’s eight episodes in this first season. Will there be more? Do you have lots of stuff in the works? Do you guys just record 20 years worth of material? You’re gonna keep them out?
More? No. Well, you can answer this for me.
Yeah, we I mean, there’s a episodes and you’ll be checking them all out. And you know, again, I don’t know if you can’t put this on me. But spoiler there might be a season two.
Spoiler alert, there might be a season.
Like how do I say that?
Everyone wants to come back and do it? Yeah. I think if everyone wants to come back and do and collaborate again and find more things with these characters and give them a bigger journey. That’d be fantastic. Yeah, I’d be open. I mean,
there’s gonna be like, they don’t all die at the end. Do they? I mean, like, spoiler alert, for sure. But if there’s like a bus accident, like that
took over. Yeah.
It would be so terrible. The second season is like way more serious. It’s like It’s like, yeah, our meats like contagion. They’re just like running around.
Well, it’s funny that you say that, because that was something that like, definitely takes like a turn is like it really starts comedy, but he kind of gets into drama it when you say Gary, like, like, you know, for its fifth episode. You start, there’s like a turn. Yeah, that’s, that’s very interesting. And I think which gives it a lot more meat to it. Huh? Yeah. Yeah.
Gary, you mentioned that when you write and when you create projects, you like to help people? Were you creating this project to kind of make light of the what could be a rough experience for college students?
So creating this? Yeah, I thought, Yeah, absolutely. I thought that college students are having a hard time right now, kids in junior high kids in high school, everyone’s having a hard time staying at home. Because look, we want to be with our friends, we want to hug our friends, we want to know, play sports and everything. But I think I thought this would be a good opportunity for us to create a show that can potentially help people make light of the situation. So I think where there’s darkness, there’s, there’s comedy. So I think people can come together and to watch the show. And I also figured this could be kind of like a time capsule. And people can discover it on YouTube, and you know, two or three years and say, Where are they? Oh, I remember.
Yeah. Now that sounds like real, like, like, like, legit, I’m telling you, and a few years, it’s gonna be like, certain, like, you know, having this out is so important. Because, you know, so many of us had ideas or starting projects or whatever, but they didn’t make it all the way out. And, you know, this being out, you know, it does, it’s a time capsule of what happened during this time, the way that we work together, the way that we connected, even the idea that your cast is all across the country is so fun. Like, it’s not like you’re all in the same town, and you just happen to be at your own homes, you’re like all over the place. You’ve never actually met these people, which is great.
fun and opens my mind and, and opens other creative people’s minds to like, what can be accomplished. And you know, it doesn’t just have to be, you know, any you don’t have to have to be in New York or LA, you can be anywhere and be part of these cool projects. Right?
Yeah, I think it gives us definitely hope for the future. Because I remember we all remember 20 years ago, 15 years, even 10 years ago, social media wasn’t a thing. I remember when the YouTube boom hit, taze on day saying Chocolate Rain about I think 2007 2008 that guy, really, really popular. But then YouTube didn’t become a an official thing. Until, you know much later to now people are getting monetized and people are making money and, and it’s to the point where if you really want to make your short film or your feature, go ahead and go make it I mean, you can I mean, I’ve seen people create things from nothing and create magic for nothing. I mean, and I think this project gave me hope that because look, I’m not a social media guy. The only thing I have is Facebook and LinkedIn and IMDb. That’s all I have. I don’t do Instagram. I don’t
like all them, but to
know I don’t want With a look at what I’m eating every day, I’d be really boring on Instagram. But, yeah, yeah, I was able to go on and go to this group on Facebook, this indie film page group and ask people and everyone was like, yeah, we’re stuck at home too. We all want to make something and everyone wants to collaborate. And it’s, it’s, it’s wonderful the amount of people that want to hire you and have you in their film, and when they’re short film, and it’s, it really gives us hope that there is really great people in the world that just genuinely want to help people.
That’s the idea that like, you know, creativity and making projects cannot be held back by anything. Like, no matter what happens, even though it was like, hey, by the way, you can’t be near each other at all, and you’re like, Alright, I’ll figure it out. And then you found a way to still make something like, that’s so important, not just like, for your own personal souls, but for everybody to like, like you said, gives you hope gives me hope, that like, it got done that, like you guys put it together that you like, cared enough and worked on it, and like found people and like, became a community. Like, it’s just, you know, there’s so many rough things that have happened during 2020 that have made you just feel like, is theater never gonna happen again? Am I never gonna be on this stage? Is his film just going to be for famous people who can afford the insurance? Like, you know, like, the wild ideas of these things are like, anything is possible. So I don’t know what to think. And seeing people make stuff, seeing people put things out and, and, and make it happen now, even though like, some people are in like, you know, creative droughts. It’s so empowering. It’s so empowering. So to see that you guys made this during this time, is like, oh, okay, good. We are still strong. We are people who are going to make stuff creativity is still a thing. They cannot take it from us. Like Yes.
I think it’s really, really important that when tones are in your way, you find a way to move and find a way to get across and especially when people say Okay, guys, you guys are accurate. You guys, creatives. You can you can be with anyone within six feet as like, well. What else can you do, you can start a podcast, you can go on the radio, you can do voice for cartoon, you can do this, you, there’s so many more avenues. And I think making a film or making a series for that matter. When you literally cannot make a series, you just have to find new ways and new creative ways to do it. And these lessons that we learned, I think, personally, I’m probably gonna take with us forever.
There’s a lot to learn from like, feeling like you’re trapped. And you can just really look around you see so many blessings, and so many opportunities that you can make up and yeah,
you know, especially with all this, I see online plays a lot online zoom readings, online classes now. Now classes are such a huge thing now.
Yeah, well, yeah, like all Yes. And a lot of like, master class and stuff. I will say, from a standard point of view, the stand up or sit downs are not that fun. I am ready. But everything else I agree. Like there’s Yeah, it’s just finding like blessings, always try to, you know, look to God first. And he always just said, you know, keep your head up. And like, what, what people may not what people may see as like, closed doors, and that I always just try to see it as like, new magical doors being open somewhere else, or that might just changed into a better door. You know, so like, get a cooler key,
figure it out. It’s true. There’s so many things that previous to the year of having to sit at home. Like, we didn’t use, you know, like, we could have all been videoconferencing with each other so much zoom didn’t get invented in 20. Oh, yeah. Right. But like suddenly, it is, it is like, cross generationally. We all know how to use it now. Like the fact that my mom knows how to use it is insane. You know, right. Like the but but with this idea that we like had to write, and I haven’t lived near my mom and forever, like we’ve just talked on the phone like what? Okay, great. But now it seems like well, we have to video if we can’t see each other’s faces. But it’s so much more like now it’s something it’s a technology that we didn’t know we could use and now it’s so ubiquitous and like there’s a lot of things that have been blessings Especially in the arts world, like the, the unifying of, you know, the communities across the world to be like, wait a minute, I like Shakespeare, you like Shakespeare, or like, Oh my god, you do improv over there, we do improv, like, whatever groups, they’re all connecting, like, across the world, you know, and that’s, that’s really, really nice. Like, it’s just been a wonderful boon to see,
the way the creative community has, has stayed on top of it, and like, been working hard and using the new technologies and like, you can’t hold us back. Like, we’re gonna make stuff.
So true. So true. I mean, that’s how butterflies are made. Right. And the look, it was anywhere else, it wouldn’t be a butterfly. But sometimes you do need to be on that pressure to explode like the creativity. Yeah. Yeah. Doors, you know, kind of like a volcano thing. Like, knock out those doors. And, yeah,
so yeah, in like, volcano,
like a volcano. Like how it’s outdoors. No, you break open the top of a volcano. It’s like, it’s like, a lot of us had so much. Yeah, had so much things in our hearts and in our minds and ideas. And we just didn’t feel like we had the time or we didn’t feel like we could do it. And like he made a good point. We’ve always had zoom. We always could have put up something. But we It wasn’t until we were under pressure, right? Just like a volcano under pressure. That exploded. And all this and like,
yeah, like I got international phone interviews before COVID. But now I feel like I’m like close friends with people. Yeah, countries. That’s like, Are you kidding me? Like how am I friends with people and like, This is crazy. Oh, cool. But because of the way that we are, like I mentioned before, like we all went through this same thing, right. So when what we went through is universal. And so like, how we made our way through it is our own journey. But like we all had to endure it right. which is again, why freshmen circus will be something that we will watch now, but then come back to and be like, I remember that. That was such a real thing. Like this is a moment in time that we have captured for this right. But you know, it’s just like we we want to create and so we will because it is in our bones.
So, so true.
Gary has his ghost stories book coming out soon. garrison me a link to that so I can tell everybody to buy it. But yeah, well what other projects are you working on right now? Like what are your what’s your current jam? That is, you know, something that you’ve been working on?
Yeah, I mean, I’m an actor first and that so I’m on a show up. Check it out. It’s TBS, faith base show up.tv can also catch it on YouTube for you want to free up Show Me and my co star Cameron. We are play wacky doodle. Big kids. And we do crazy cool YouTube challenges and different things like that. And yeah, I just have a have a super fun time. You’ll see me eat crickets. I’ve had to do some crazy stuff. I vomited multiple times on idea. But you know, makes good comedy, I guess. And yeah, I’ve just done some of the coolest things, paint with tiny hands do different challenges, musical challenges and I’m also on a show daily Divo that’s faith based that you can catch it just actually got its back on again January 25. Today you can catch it at the epi.tv and or on the epi platform and yeah, so catch me there and there’s some open mics UCB UCB but unfortunately right now rip and check out my website for more up to date. That’s no Gibson official.com and yeah, those the shows and I have a Facebook commercial out. That’s still going. I think it’s like, April, I think that my contracts done so yeah, like it.
Are you able to just get back into I know that that freshmen circus was done on zoom, but your kids show and daily Divo are not on zoom. Are
they? No, no, no, these are actually Yeah, no, this is the network. Well, you know, TBN network. So yeah, I was blessed to book this at the last bit. And 2019 so I got a few months into there and then they picked it up for a season two and they did get beat stars at home and So I was, you know, one of the stars and as you guys saw me that, you know, they sent me like cameras and things that I could do at home and then they got picked back up in summer and then it closed down again. Unfortunately, this California went through a little storage here, but it’s back open and it’s in the OSI Santa Ana a little bit more conservative, so a little bit more lenient. But don’t worry, I’m COVID protected mask all around me.
Well, no, cuz I asked because I have friends. I have friends in LA, too, who are acting and they’ve, like, just haven’t been able to get much done. Like they keep start. And you know, a few friends on television shows where it’s like, Yeah, we did a week or two and then they shut
down. And then that’s exactly how it was for me. They said, That’s I said, Yep, I just I just actually filmed today. Ironically, this is the first time is November because I closed it back down again. But good news is I guess Gavin put it that on TV. And film is essential in LA now. So far, yes. We’re coming back. But no, they’re very right. I’ve been in and out. I was on the show this summer, hot mess train and hot mess Express as a guest star and I got one day and then I heard they went down into production again. So yeah, it’s been just hit or miss. But man I I can’t deny, like I have been blessed her and this year, God has totally taken care of me. So I was able to, you know, do freshmen circus, you know, my time on the other times and audition and yeah.
Yeah, my heart goes out to a lot of us who are hiatus, which shows and auditioning and that but so glad that things have still have stayed. You know, like, you’ve been able to do lots of different projects and stuff. That’s really great. Thank you. I appreciate that. Absolutely. And Gary, I’m so glad that you’re creating projects as well, not just creating, you know, TV shows, but writing books. So there any other Gary productions happening? Other than your upcoming book? Other than Yes, we got freshmen circus, we got the what’s the what’s the ghost story book name? Oh,
It’s, it’s called. It’s all everybody loves a ghost story.
Nice. I mean, everybody does.
It’s true. Yeah. I mean, and then and the thing I’m working on right now that’s going to be out, I’d say in a month, it’s called fan demick 50. Fans celebrate 50 years of cinema. So what I did is I got 50 fans together. And they’re all reenacting a scene from from a movie from a different year. So we will have the last 50 years of cinema all done by reenactment from people around the world, we all put together into one collab. And it’s just gonna be a lot of fun, and it’s very exciting.
Number one gear, I love that you just said colab. Number two, I love that your whole thing is like, putting all this stuff to get, like, That’s such a cool way of creating, like, I have talked to tons hundreds of people. And usually, you know, they’re creating projects, writing things, and you are too but I love that this ghost story and this fan demmick thing are both like these pulling together of different stories and different productions. And, you know, like scenes done from people like, so cool that you came up with these ideas. Like they’re just very original.
Great. Yeah, well, well, a fan demmick the main part of it was I wanted to give something I wanted to give people the opportunity to create something that they really like, even if it was from home. And the roles that I gave everyone was, you know, stay home and use what you know you have. And so people are, you know, this movie is going to cover the last 50 years of film. So you got people, I think somebody is doing a scene from the shining. someone’s doing a scene from the exorcism. He was doing a scene from Willy Wonka and, and we’re all gonna just put this into one film and show everyone how film has progressed. But also people doing stuff from home and, and I just had somebody that did a little mermaid. And she did it. She reenacted a simple little mermaid mermaid with her kids. Yeah, I just thought it was so wonderful to get the kids involved. And if it helps one family do something fun for a day and to get them to not think about the coven. And I did my job, right. I mean,
I know, you know, I never taught kids before COVID but now I’m doing all these kids online improv classes, you know, largely to, you know, give the kids different activities to do and also just to be like, hey, let’s
have fun. He wants to have fun.
There’s not a lot of fun in the world right now. Let’s be fun. Oh, man, you guys are so great. Thank you so much for being on the podcast Gary Noel. It has been so great to chat with you about your journeys about such creative projects from both of you. And congratulations on freshmen circus everybody should check it out. And you know, watch all of the episodes as they come out on Wednesdays. And then maybe we’ll see these characters in a brand new adventure in season two, but thank you guys so much for being part of the podcast.
Thank you so much for having us.
Yes. Thank you so much, Amy.
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