Sasheer Zamata to join Saturday Night Live cast as Featured Player -

January 03, 2014

Sasheer Zamata to join Saturday Night Live cast as Featured Player

On January 18th, U.Va. Drama alumni, Sasheer Zamata, will make her debut as a featured player on Saturday Night Live.  According to U.Va. Drama Associate Professor Theresa Davis, “As an improv performer and comedienne she was hysterical, daring, quick—a brilliant performer. She has amazing stage presence and excellent timing. Sasheer is fierce!”  Professor Davis directed Sasheer in for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf.   “I have this memory of her standing powerfully on stage, connecting with the audience, claiming her space and speaking her truth. Sasheer offered up a strong performance and it was evident that Sasheer was destined for the arts. I believe she cites her involvement in “for colored girls…”as one of the experiences that inspired her to become a Drama Major.”

After graduating from U.Va., Sasheer began performing at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in New York and Cosmopolitan recently named her one of 13 Funny Women to Watch in 2014. She created the web series Pursuit of Sexiness with Nicole Byer and has performed improv with Doppelganger – a trio of comediennes.  She also wrote and performed in a web series for The Cooking Channel, called Fodder.

U.Va. Drama Professor Richard Warner recently reflected on working with Sasheer.  “If you asked me to describe Sasheer in one word it would have to be vivacious. I served as her academic adviser for a couple of years and I recall our meetings were always energized by her radiant smile and her off-beat sense of humor. In her early twenties Sasheer was a confident, poised, ambitious, well-spoken individual. She wasn’t a person to wait around until a performance opportunity presented itself. She had a gift for creating her own work. She was the co-creator of the U.Va. improv group Amuse Bouche and was very instrumental in the revival of the Paul Robeson Players, the U.Va. African-American Theater Ensemble. She was a leader. She had a knack for getting friends to join her in creative projects,” said Warner.

During her time at U.Va. Zamata was also active with First Year Players and both acted in and directed productions with the Paul Robeson Players.

The Drama Department congratulates Sasheer on her new role and looks forward to her debut!