NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 28: Actress Sasheer Zamata attends the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards at Madison Square Garden on August 28, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage)
Dimitrios Kambouris—WireImage
By Samantha Cooney
March 31, 2017

Saturday Night Live cast member Sasheer Zamata says audiences are responding to discussions about race more than ever now.

In a new interview with Glamour, the comedian — who debuted a stand-up special, Pizza Mind, this week says that she’s always tried to discuss race and identity in her comedy sets, but that the election has increased the appetite for those frank conversations.

“I do think that people have a desire to talk about issues they may have wanted to avoid before. I’ve never had so many random conversations with people where they’re so ready to talk about race, gender, sexual identity, or things that are happening in politics,” she said. “I don’t think anything I’ve been doing has changed, but the response has changed.”

She also spoke out about the frustrations she faced as a black woman in Hollywood, including being mistaken for other actors of color. “It seems like they maybe don’t respect me or the other black performers they are confusing me for enough to keep us separate. We all have different talents and different reasons for why we’re in the public eye, but some people just kind of lump us in one pile, like, ‘OK, black women,'” she tells Glamour. “It’s like… We don’t do the same stuff. We’re not on the same shows. We’re different people.”

Read the full interview on Glamour.

Write to Samantha Cooney at samantha.cooney@time.com.

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