WAT’s Proust Questionnaire: Allison Daugherty –
Talented Actress with a Magical Voice

Even if you haven’t seen Allison Daugherty on stage, you might have heard her voice in TV commercials (Royal Caribbean, American Express, L’Oreal, 3M, and Jeep) or in audio books (Danielle Steele, Patricia Clark, and Nancy Reagan’s New York Times bestseller I Love You, Ronnie). Her recording of The Harder They Fall for the BBC with Tim Blake Nelson was awarded best radio play of the year.

Or perhaps you’ve seen her in a film (she played Kim Basinger’s sister in I Dreamed of Africa, Hi Life, and Small Room Dancing) or on TV (NBC’s Third Watch, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Sex and The City, Hack, and Spin City). She was a guest stand up comedienne for HBO’s Comedy Central.

Seeing Allison on stage is the real deal and now you have the chance to see her in the upcoming World Premiere of The Clearing, written by Jake Jeppson (Jerome Fellowship recipient and recent Yale graduate taught by Paula Vogel) and directed by Josh Hecht (Drama Desk Award winner for Christine Jorgensen Reveals) at St. Clements. For tickets go to The Clearing Place Play NYC.

Allison took time out from rehearsals to answer WAT’s Proust Questionnaire written by Jason Veduccio.

What was your ideal job before the current situation?
I lived and worked at the fabulous Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis. It’s amazing; they give you a chic loft to live in, I worked with a world class playwright, director and cast, went to hot yoga almost daily and went out every night after the show. Crazy, right? Alright now, time to fold the socks.

What job did you hate?
I stocked inventory in a perfume warehouse. It was mind numbing. My sister and I got so delirious from the fumes that we could stop laughing and had to be separated. Solitary confinement in a warehouse! We had perfume headaches for weeks.

What people inspired you to follow this path?
Kathy Bates on stage, Ruth Nelson, Bruce Springsteen.

When you were sixteen, whom did you want to be when you grew up?
Meryl Streep.

How old would you be if age didn’t matter?
Probably 42….young enough to feel hungry but old enough to say “screw it”.

How many people in your life would you call a close friend?
Between twenty and thirty. I get pretty close to people. We tend to dig in.

Who would get you excited to attend a meeting if you knew they would be there?
Studs Terkel.

What was the tipping point in getting you into your current professional position?
There have been a few phases but I’d say that my early years at the Willamstown Theatre Festival were pivotal. Magical. So many successful actors and writers cam out of our year there.

What is the single most important thing to do to be successful?
Care.

What is the most over­rated thing about being successful?
Being busy.

2 photo-The Clearing-p

Allison in The Clearing

What could you use right now if someone would invent it for you?
An efficiency shoulder elf: one who would coach me on how to get through the day; how not to waste time; how to shave the fat off the shank.

What should young people know as they leave school?
Curiosity is the best kind of intelligence.

What do you do most when together with your family?
Imagine what the dogs must be thinking and talk for them in stupid voices. Truly, a LOT of time is spent like this. It makes us laugh. Our house is never dull.

What do you love to do with your free time lately that you would rather not admit?
OK: Surf the Internet zoning out on rug patterns. I love graphics. It’s like having a virtual stamp collection.

What personal or professional goals do you have for yourself for two years from now?
I’ve never been nominated for an award. I’d love to move people enough to leave an indelible character in people’s memory. Those are big boots to fill, I know…..

What does your most commonly eaten lunch consist of?
A hand full of almonds and maybe some Parmesan cheese. Yum.

Who is your favorite fashion designer for business clothes?
I’d go with Gucci.

What do you need to get through the day that you would least like to sacrifice right now?
A good long gaze at the trees or the stars at night.

What do you need to get through the day that you would most like to sacrifice right now?
My smart phone.

If all of humanity was to stop what they were doing and focus on working together on just one thing through to its completion, what is it we should we all be doing in your opinion?
I’d love to see a world wide focus on respecting women and girls, especially in challenged countries like the Congo and Afghanistan. I’d like MUCH more feminine influence in our own government. The world now is like a table with half its legs shorter than the others. We’re off balance. Come on people, you know you feel safe when mama’s home!

About Charlene Giannetti (778 Articles)
Charlene Giannetti, editor of Woman Around Town, is the recipient of seven awards from the New York Press Club for articles that have appeared on the website. A graduate of Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, Charlene began her career working for a newspaper in Pennsylvania, then wrote for several publications in Washington covering environment and energy policy. In New York, she was an editor at Business Week magazine and her articles have appeared in many newspapers and magazines including the New York Times. She is the author of 12 non-fiction books, eight for parents of young adolescents written with Margaret Sagarese, including "The Roller-Coaster Years," "Cliques," and "Boy Crazy." She and Margaret have been keynote speakers at many events and have appeared on the Today Show, CBS Morning, FOX News, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, and many others. Her new book, "The Plantations of Virginia," written with Jai Williams, will be published by Globe Pequot Press in February, 2017. Charlene divides her time between homes in Manhattan and Alexandria, Virginia.