Hi, I'm Mariann Aalda! You may recognize me from more than 30 years of acting on TV with folks like Kirstie Ally, Ernie Hudson, Redd Foxx, Della Reese, Dennis Haysbert, Meshach Taylor and John Ritter,...mostly in comedies, with a few major soap operas thrown in. Cast in 1981 as criminal defense attorney DiDi Bannister on ABC's Edge of Night, I got to help raise the profile of women of color on TV as one of the first full-blown African-American soap opera heroines.
These days, I'm prosecuting ageism! The video below, taped on February 2, 2020, is ONE HOUR before my SOLD OUT show at NYC's historic Billie Holiday Theatre. Click on the video below that one -- and those in the sidebar -- for a show "tease" -- and audience testimonials.
Many thanks to TEDx Oak Park Women for inviting me to speak at their December 12, 2019 event.
Click below to see the talk.
And now, back to my alter ego, "Adult Sex-Ed Evangelist & Mojo Motivator, Dr. Ginger Peechee-Keane!" She's been dispensing her wit and wisdom about getting older and still getting your groove on in New York, Chicago, New Orleans, Los Angeles, at the 2019 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, NC, where she made box office history for selling out all of her performances TWICE after additional seats were added to the Convention Center venue...and in 2020, back to New York, again! Click on the link below to hear more of what audiences have to say!!
AT THE 2019 NATIONAL BLACK THEATRE FESTIVAL
Click below for more of my story...
What do I find so funny? Click below...
I'm in great company! ...and get the last word (video) Click below...
Click below for my solo profile as an AARP #AgeDisruptor. Because that's what Badasses do...we DISRUPT!
After graduating from Southern Illinois University with concentrations in Theatre & Journalism & NYC's prestigious Negro Ensemble Company theater training program (Laurance Fishburne and Robert Townsend were classmates), I got my show biz start on the gritty streets of New York City doing bawdy sketch comedy and political satire with Off-Centre Theatre on a pull-down stage off the side of a seen-better-days moving van with a baby on my hip...and touring the country with the Boston improv troupe, The Proposition. More than 30 years later, I've maintained my comedy chops, and expanded them into standup and performance art. Thanks to my young, rising star comedy co-stars like Calvin Evans and T-Murph, I've even made fans of Millenials with my improv comedy web series, "TALK TO ME, GINGER!" based on my performance art character "Dr. Ginger" from my live shows.
Click on the photos below for a peek into Dr. Ginger's World with...
"THE PREACHER & "THE PIMP"
Ginger is now "in session" with the wacky clients she was forced to see as part of her community service for nude sunbathing at Multnomah Falls National Park. These purloined tapes were stolen from her office and are being released online by a stalker until she agrees to go out with him.
(totally improvised, btw)
* * *
Mariann's Mission Statement
Comedy or drama, thought-provoking or escapist entertainment...my objective remains the same: creating characters that audiences can identify with and telling a good story. Borrowing from sports parlance, my performance philosophy is: Go deep (emotionally) go long (unafraid to look foolish) or go home. (No sexual innuendo intended)
I've been developing the character of "Dr. Ginger" in cabaret, sketch, improv and theater productions since 2005. In 2013, I was selected to workshop my solo show, Occupy Your Vagina! at NYC's Dixon Place, the Tony-Award winning incubator for cutting-edge theater. John Leguizamo, Alan Cumming and BD Wong honed their solo shows there. I went on to bring that show to New Orleans, Chicago and Los Angeles, where I workshopped it again and it morphed into Getting' Old Is a Bitch...But I'm Gonna Wrestle That Bitch to the Ground!
"Dr. Ginger" keeps growing and changing as I continue to grow and change. We're BOTH writing books and "Dr. Ginger" often makes guest appearances with me on the speaker's circuit in addition to her 75-min. solo show. She's got lots more stories to tell so there may even be a follow-up show. We'll see...