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Maysoon is a comedian, author, disability advocate, and self-confessed hustler. Maysoon has been facing into challenges in her life from the very beginning after being born with cerebral palsy. She was treated the same as her sisters growing up and never saw the disability as something to hold her back from following her dreams. We talk about her career, tap dancing, acting, comedy, work as an advocate for Muslims and Arabs in the US as well as her work helping people overcome the stigma with disabilities.
She has a new audio book called Find Another Dream coming out through Reese Witherspoon’s company, Hello Sunshine. The book has been on the best seller list for weeks and is beating Donald Trump Jr’s book.
We cover a lot during this interview and here is a summary of it:
- Facing challenges from the very start
- Dealing with Cerebral Palsy & how to approach life with the disability
- Growing up without any discrimination or bullying
- Feeling discrimination for being disabled when going to college
- Becoming an advocate for disability
- Her first advocacy work focusing on creating positive images for Arabs in America post 9/11
- Using the word disabled destigmatizes its it – there is no shame!
- Tap dancing on Broadway changing her entire life!
- How comedy emerged through her study of acting in college
- Starting to audition after college
- Signing up for a comedy class and finding a natural talent for it
- Now teaching comedy as it’s something that can be taught
- Being cast on General Hospital
- Writing Comedy every single day – no matter what – write jokes
- Don’t memorize jokes, more freestyle
- Using stable jokes that Maysoon knows work
- Making comedy as a conversation
- Get half of the room to laugh, the other half will be drowned out
- The evolution of her comedy and now knowing words matter
- In 2003, starting an Arab comedy festival, now 16 years on!
- Combatting the negative image of Arabs and muslins in media
- Inspiring others through the festival
- A Big break – Countdown with Keith Olbermann
- The inspiration behind the book Find Another Dream – not making the acting dream come through and switching to comedy!
- Know when it’s time to quit….when you don’t love whatever it is anymore!
- Dealing with fear?
- Planning ahead and what the future looks like?
- Being a hustler and always juggling many roles
- Who inspires Maysoon?
- Getting to know and learning form Adam Sander while working with him in the movie ‘don’t mess with the Zohan’ and seeing
- Maysoon’s book – Find Another Dream can be found on any online book store. You can get it through the site from this link –
You can find her book here – https://amzn.to/2ruhhJk
Maysoon’s website is https://maysoon.com/