Chlumsky has appeared onstage in such productions as Measure for Measure, Darwin in Malibu, Half Life, The Butcherhouse Chronicles, The Fabulous Life of a Size Zero and Unconditional.
Her screen work includes the lead role in "My Girl" and "My Girl 2," "Uncle Buck," "Gold Diggers: The Secret of Bear Mountain," "Cupid", "Law & Order" and "30 Rock."
She currently plays chief of staff Amy on HBO's "Veep."
|Full given name:||Anna Mary Chlumsky|
|Where you were born/where you were raised:||Broadview, IL|
|What your parents did/do for a living:||Mom: Public school music teacher
Dad: Chef/Culinary instructor
|Siblings:||1 half-brother. He rocks.|
|Special skills:||Needlepoint and crochet|
|Something you're REALLY bad at:||Video games|
|First Broadway show you ever saw:||The Secret Garden|
|If you could go back in time and catch any show, what would it be?||The original Into the Woods or Sweeney Todd|
|Did you have any particular mentors or inspirations as a young actor?|| Inspirations: Vivien Leigh, Bernadette Peters, Bette Davis, Ann Miller.
Also, as a kid, I had this choreographer named Brenda Didier. I loved everything about her. I would wear warm-up clothes to school - jazz shoes, legwarmers and all - because I was so into her.
|Current show you have been recommending to friends:||One Man, Two Guvnors and Once|
|Favorite showtunes of all time:|| "Cabaret"
"I Am What I Am"
"The Impossible Dream"
|Some favorite musicals:|| A Little Night Music
Into the Woods
La Cage aux Folles
|Some favorite modern plays:|| Pillowman
The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?
|Some favorite modern playwrights:||Edward Albee, John Guare, Nicky Silver, Rebecca Gilman, Amy Herzog|
|Stage or screen stars of the past you would most have loved to perform with:||Jimmy Durante, Eddie Cantor, Gene Kelly, Marjorie Main|
|The one performance – attended - that you will never forget:||My family and I saw the revival tour of Show Boat at the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago. At the finale, the full company performed "Old Man River," and I get chills just thinking about it.|
|Music that makes you cry, any genre:||Mahler, Tchaikovsky and Bernstein can all really get to me. Also, when PBS airs the clip of Zero Mostel performing "If I Were a Rich Man," I'm a mess.|
|You personal acting idols:||Bette Davis, Karl Malden, Vivien Leigh, Jimmy Stewart, Jack Lemmon, Emma Thompson, Gary Oldman, Julianne Moore, I could go on...|
|MAC or PC?||MAC|
|Most-visited websites:||art.sy, shopstyle.com, goodreads.com|
|Most played song on your iPod:||Lately the most-played is "Déjame Entrar" by Carlos Vives.|
|Last book you read:||"Devil in the White City"|
|Must-see TV show(s):||
"Veep" (duh!), "Girls," "Game of Thrones," "Downton Abbey," "Nurse Jackie," "Justified," "So You Think You Can Dance." And a good dose of "RuPaul's Drag Race" can't hurt.
|Last good movie you saw:||"Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy"|
|Some films you consider classics:||"American in Paris," "Gone with the Wind," "The Godfather," "The Third Man, "Star Wars" trilogy, "Singin' in the Rain," "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?," "It Happened One Night" (again, I could go on...).|
|Three favorite cities:||New York, London, Brussels|
Football (both American and European - it's a toss up) Bears and Barça
I've got a little crush on Sergio Ramos of Real Madrid, I must admit.
|Performer you would drop everything to go see:||Daniela Mercury|
|Pop culture guilty pleasure:||The Housewives on Bravo. All of 'em.|
|First CD/Tape/LP you owned:||"Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band" by the Beatles|
|First stage kiss:||I think it was this little Off-Off-Broadway showcase called The Colonel's Holiday.|
|Moment you knew you wanted to perform for a living:||Watching Mercedes Ruehl serve it in The Goat.|
|Favorite pre-/post- show meal:||A pre/post-show meal is always great at 'Nizza on 9th. With a nice... (see next question)|
|Favorite liquid refreshment:||... Campari and Soda.|
|Pre-show rituals or warm-ups:||I like to vocalize and run my lines every day. At the show, putting the face on always gets me in gear. Wishing "merde" to the company. Doing a little roll up and down of the body to check in right before hitting the stage.|
|What drew you to this project?||It goes all over the place, and I was more than game for that ride. I love material that doesn't let anyone off the hook. This show's got balls. Kooky, wacko balls.|
|Was there any particular research or pre-preparation that went into this character?||
"Connie" likes to draw connections between her life and the world around her, (as she sees it), so I watched several movies from 1978, just to touch on the pop culture of that year. Then Denny Terrio taught us some great disco moves. And - most importantly - there's the whole rehearsal process, which helped me to really dive into the character herself.
|Any upcoming projects you can talk about?||My show "Veep" has been picked up for another season. Yay!|
|Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap:||I said a post-spit-take line before the spit-take. So during the spit-take I panicked and did some weird Mr. Mooney-esque blubbering with my face, swishing my cheeks around and making a mess. Yipe!|
|Worst costume ever:||Some of the outfits in "Gold Diggers: The Secret of Bear Mountain" were pretty rough - though accurate for the role.|
|Worst job you ever had:||Fact-checking in a window-less room for a year.|
|Some favorite screen or commercial roles:||I'm pretty partial to "Amy" in "Veep". I also really enjoyed the role I played in an episode of "Covert Affairs" - "Vivian." She was a hoot.|
|Who have you played on "Law & Order"? What editions?||I played a bad nanny and a loyal law student. Both on the "mothership."|
|Leading lady role you've been dying to play:||Antigone|
|Leading man role you wish you could play:||Ricky Roma in Glengarry Glen Ross|
|Something about you that surprises people:||That I have a membership at Midtown Comics.|
|Something you are incredibly proud of:||Being a show person|
|Something you're embarrassed to admit:||Sometimes I'll choose TV over yoga.|
|Career you would want if not a performer:||Equestrian rider? Wine grower? Hard to say. I really like being a performer.|
|Three things you can't live without:||Lip balm, World Cup and a cast-iron skillet|
|"I'll never understand why…"||... some lessons are harder to learn than others.|
|Words of advice for aspiring performers:||Of course you can!|