“Mole” is a new play by comedian turned playwright Mo Welch that uses her animated illustrations to comedically explore her attachment issues. The show is part of Cherry Lane Theatre’s A Summer of Comedy which is presented in part by actor and trans icon Elliot Page.
Mo Welch is a nationally-headlining stand-up comedian, cartoonist and writer. She has twice appeared on Conan, and authored the illustrated self-help guide “How to Die Alone: The Foolproof Guide to Not Helping Yourself”. The show will run August 3 and 4 at The Cherry Lane Theater in NYC.
Mo recently discussed this play and more via an exclusive interview.
Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you discover your talent for comedy and what is it about standup that most appeals to you?
Mo Welch (MW): It was kind of a lucky guess. It’s not like it looked anything close to talent when I tried it for the first time, but I’ve put a lot of hours into it at this point. I love stand-up, because you can do anything you want. There are no real guidelines to it. It is what you want it to be.
MM: How did you get into illustration and how does that ability compliment your comedic endeavors?
MW: I’ve been drawing since I was a child but didn’t start consistently drawing comics until 2014. Now it’s a new form of comedy I have pulled into what I already have. My show “Mole” combines my love of art and comedy.
MM: How did you get into playwriting and how is performing in the traditional theater different from stand-up stages?
MW: Performing in theaters is different, because people aren’t eating cheese fries at you. It’s definitely a different crowd, less rowdy. I’ve opened for Anthony Jeselnik and Chelsea Handler on the road and they play in large, beautiful theaters, so I feel spoiled. Now I just have to find a way to be comfortable being the main act.
MM: This play explores your personal issues, so was it tough to write about that to be shared publicly?
MW: Nothing is off limits as a stand up, so it’s not tough to write about and share. It was only difficult because I’m used to only telling traditional jokes, and this show has jokes, stories, art and animation. It takes a lot of preparation
MM: How did you start working with The Cherry Lane Theater?
MW: I can’t remember how the conversation started, but I’m pretty sure they found me at an open mic. If that’s not right, it was because of the producers Carlee and Mike and my agent Rachel.
MM: What’s your favorite part of the play and why?
MW: My favorite part is any part involving my animated ole. It’s the heart of the show.
MM: Might you write more plays in the future and, if so, what themes might you focus on?
MW: I think that would be nice, but the themes might be NSFW…:)
MM: What other projects are you working on right now and what themes might you like to explore in future works?
MW: I’m working on my stand-up special right now. It’s a docu-special about meeting my dad and it’s for sale.
MM: What are your ultimate goals for the future and is there anything else that you would like to mention?
MW: My goal is to continue to create visual art and incorporate that into my comedy. It’s very fulfilling and time consuming, but ultimately, I’m very proud of it, and that can unfortunately be rare for a seemingly cynical comedian.