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Livin' La Vida Valls
by Lawrence Ferber

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Out lesbian comedian Sandra Valls is one of four Latina funnywomen— including Sara Contreras, Monique Marvez and the late Marilyn Martinez—featured in the raucous The Original Latin Divas of Comedy, recently out on DVD. Born in Scottsbluff, Neb.; raised in Mexico and Texas; and currently based in Los Angeles, the Mexican-American Valls' credits include appearances on LOGO's One Night Stand Up, ABC's Comics Unleashed with Byron Allen, Galavision's Que Locos and the HBO Comedy Festival in Las Vegas, during which she shared the stage with Eva Longoria.

Lawrence Ferber: How did you become involved with the Latin Divas?

Sandra Valls: [ Producer ] Scott Montoya, who is my manager now, saw me and liked me and said, 'I'm going to get you involved with the Latin Divas of Comedy because I think we need to hear your story, too.' We wanted to show a different variety of Latinas—we have Puerto Rican, we have a very, very straight Cuban perspective. [ Mexican ] Marilyn Marinez, God rest her soul, just passed away a few weeks ago from colon cancer.

LF: I'm sorry to hear that.

SV: Yeah, we all were. We weren't shocked but we were surprised, if that makes any sense. It was just really, really sad.

LF: Did any of the other girls take issue with you being a lesbian?

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SV: Hell no! They didn't; they were really wonderful, powerful women. We are all very strong women and we all stuck together. I'm trying to break stereotypes across the board. The only issue I had was that Scott wanted me to wear a gown. I'm all, 'What the hell with the gown? The Latin Kings didn't have to wear fucking gowns.' And he was like, 'Why are you being difficult?'

LF: You're totally pimped out in a zoot suit in the artwork, so you obviously won that fight.

SV: Thank you, papi, thank you. But I did femme it up a little bit—I wore a little heel kind of boot. You know, I had to compromise.

LF: What sort of inspiration went into your Divas appearance?

SV: First, I wanted to break stereotypes of gay Latinas because our community, the Latino community, is just very, very stuck on religion. I can make a difference and be a pioneer and an advocate for gay and women's rights, and I really believe in justice for all, that's the fire up my ass. I have a little bit called 'Butch Talk' and how to finger women and how I really please women orally and how to treat women's bodies. I think there should be a daytime talk show called Butch Talk. Look out Dr. Phil—here comes Butch Talk. We're really going to learn how to make it so she won't have to fake it.

LF: Have you pitched this to LOGO?

SV: Exactly! We're working on it. We're going to learn how to give her the big 'O' instead of the big 'no.'

LF: So you got into comedy thanks to an ex-girlfriend who signed you up for comedy classes as a 'consolation prize' when she dumped you?

SV: Yes.

LF: Was your whole first routine just ragging on her ass?

SV: I just talked about whatever, like, 'Hey, what the fuck is up with decaf coffee?' or whatever—stupid shit, observational stuff—and the teacher was like, 'You're much more funny when you talk about your girlfriend.' She actually heard it and she's very open-minded and cool. You know how the earthy crunchy lesbians are? She actually heard my comedy, and it wasn't that bad and she appreciated it. And ever since then I've been like, 'I really love this—and you're going to pay me to be myself?'

LF: Do you have a girlfriend these days?

SV: Yes and no. Sometimes lesbians don't know if they are or it they aren't. I'm in love with somebody, yes. So hopefully that will come to some [ fruition ] .

LF: Like most of the media-savvy population at this point, you have a MySpace page. Do you get any scary friends' requests?

SV: I have stalkers—well, I call them stalkers. I have deleted some friends because they have talked to me a little bit too much about the gay thing and how they're against it and I'm like, 'Okay. If you become a pain in my ass I will delete you.' I love MySpace, actually, because if you have the opportunity to reach a lot of people, to be an advocate and touch people's lives in whatever possible way, I say do it.

LF: Funny or not funny: our politicians' stance on immigration?

SV: It's just not funny. I grew up where everybody is an immigrant, legal or illegal. To me it's a very touchy subject. The whole human rights thing. I guarantee you if the USA was fucked up like Mexico was, wouldn't you want to get your ass to Canada? I would! If I had a family to feed, I'd be like fuck this shit—I'm going up there!

LF: Just did the HBO Comedy Festival with Eva Longoria. Was she totally hot?

SV: Totally hot, totally cool, totally cute. I've known her for a while and we talked a bit. I tried my best to convert her but she was playing craps all night. I tried everything!

Sandra Valls will appear at the Valentine's Comedy Jam at Joe's, 940 W. Weed, on Sun., Feb. 17. The cost is $12 in advance and $15 at the door; see www.samesideofthefence.com . Visit www.welovesandra.com for more info on Valls.

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