We all know that the media doesn’t always get all their info correct. What is the strangest thing you have read about yourself that wasn’t true?
That I spent 2 years living in New York. Huh? When?!

What is the most memorable tweet/mention/message or post you have received, or been tagged/mentioned in?
“Claudine Ullman is like the South African Lena Dunham, only fully clothed.” Nicki Obel tweet. I love Lena Dunham so this was so one of those tweets you refer to whenever your ego is feeling bruised. 3. Everybody starts their working careers off small. What was your very first job?
Very first job was tutoring high school maths. I guess that’s why I chose to become an improviser im very good at “Faking it till I make it.”Haha

Claudine 29 3The comedy game is a tough arena to break into. What encouraging words do you have for anyone with dreams of becoming a successful comedian?
Don’t give up the first time you ‘die’ on stage. Failure is part of the game and makes us stronger and better. Trust the process.

Having traveled a lot you must have met a wide variety of people. Who was your most memorable?
Amy Peohler. I went to go watch her perform Improv Comedy in New York and stood shivering by the stage door to congratulate her after the show. She eventually came out with a whole entourage of people. So I just stood back and shouted “Well done! I love you.” It was like a tragic love scene from some 80’s cult classic. All I needed was a boom box. She ignored me. I was so embarrassed I just ran to the closest tube. Haha. OMG. I still cringe when I think about it.

I am sure you have encountered a few fans along the way. What has been your favourite fan encounter?
I Love it when fans think I’m someone else, I find it so funny… “Hey, aren’t you that really funny comedian?…The one from TV?...Nina Hastie.” I’m always flattered so I just laugh and say yes. 7. Even the biggest stars have heroes they would love to meet, given the opportunity. Who would you like to meet?
This list goes on for days but Oprah, Chapelle, Mariah Bamford and Tina Fey are at the very top.

Most people have someone who inspired them to become what they are. Who was your inspiration?
So I used to watch comedy with my Dad growing up and I would say comedians like Tracey Ullman, Carol Burnette.

You are the founder of Jittery Citizens. Please tell us what Jittery Citizens is and how it came about.
“Jittery Citizens brings sharp-as-a-tack, improvisational comedy to South Africa. Whether it be training top executives on how Present Like a Pro, or solidifying relationships through an Improv team building experience, or performing hilarious off-the-cuff comedy on various stages across the country, Jittery Citizens are guaranteed to invoke spontaneous laughter from even the most serious audiences.” Copy and pasted this straight from my website…it sums it up perfectly. 

You have a Bachelors Degree in Dramatic Arts. What was the driving force behind your decision go into comedy?

I’ve always known I was funny and always loved to make people laugh. All of my nursery school reports read: “Claudine can often be found in the dress up corner, inviting (It was more like forcing) her friends to watch her performances.”

Did you always want to be a comic performer, or did you have different dreams as a child?
The dream was always to be on stage or designing the costumes for people on stage. I got over that very quickly when I realized that designing costumes meant I would need to be “behind the scenes.” I was clearly a little-limelight hogger.

How has your life changed with your success?

I feel like I haven’t even scraped the surface yet. I am so fortunate to be doing what I am passionate about and am determined to always raise the bar higher and never be complacent. I try to celebrate every little success along the way and learn from every failure. That way I am always moving closer to the manifestation of my dreams.

What has been your most challenging decision in your career thus far? What made it so challenging?
I think it has been whether to live overseas or pursue my career here in South Africa. Especially with Improv Comedy it always comes down to ‘would [I] rather be a big fish in a small pond or a small fish in a big pond’? I don’t know I’m still grappling with that one. 

With so much experience under your belt, what is next for Claudine Ullman to conquer?
Wow, I have so many big dreams and so many amazing experiences I am excited to manifest. But at the moment am working on writing my first stand up one woman show. Calling it ‘Mind The Thigh Gap.’ It should be completed by the end of the year! Exciting times!

Having done so much work and travel, what has become your fondest memory of your career thus far?
Performing at Comedy Cellar (I sometimes cry a bit when I think about it.)

Everyone harbours a pet peeve. What is yours?
I hate people who, in public, will have conversations on their cell phones, on loudspeaker! Argh, drives me crazy. 

Random Question. If you could choose any superhero to play on a big budget Hollywood production, who would you play? 
Harlequin, obviously. Or if I had to make up my own it would be Couch Potato Lady. I’d be brilliant in that role. Am already doing some method acting preparing for that role.

Have you enjoyed this little interview? 
Yes, immensely. I have answered all these questions on my couch in my PJ’s. So I couldn’t be happier. 

Final Question: Do you have a special message for all our readers? 
Stay in SkOol Kidz

Thank you very much for taking part in this interview. It has been a pleasure reading your responses and getting to know you just that little bit better. I, and your many fans, take great pleasure in learning more about you. We at Keeping it Real wish you all the best for the future!