Kristin Chenoweth is A Little Bit Wicked and whole lotta fun

I've watched Kristin Chenoweth raise the roof on a concert hall, blow the doors off a Broadway theater, and melt a movie camera, but Monday night on Jay Leno to plug her memoir A Little Bit Wicked, she accomplished her most astonishing feat to date: she made the Snuggie look good. My homegirl has a penchant for late night infomercial shopping, so I wasn't surprised to see her in the voluminous red blanket-robe-Druid-ceremonial-costume thing that's been advertised lately.

Gotta love her.

No, I mean it. To know this woman is to love her. Not a vindictive bone in her body, generous to a fault, funny, smart, and a phenomenal, classically trained performer completely dedicated to the hard-working work of art. Always willing to give up glamour in favor of a good laugh. She's a diva, no doubt, but she doesn't take herself too seriously, and I've never seen her be rude or impatient with any of the many fans who approach her on the streets of New York, where she's a highly visible Broadway demi-goddess. My objective as her memoir guru was to capture her delightful voice so readers could enjoy hanging out with her as much as I have.

So far, buzz is good, including this item in Express Night Out that captured her spiritual side:
COOTER, HOO HOO and Georgia O'Keefe. Those are a few of the terms that Kristin Chenoweth uses for her vagina in her new memoir, A Little Bit Wicked: Life, Love, and Faith in Stages. And that's really about as wicked as the book ever gets; not surprising really, considering she's a squeaky-clean, God-fearing lass from the Bible Belt state of Oklahoma... Throughout the book, Chenoweth manages to speak of her faith in God in a way that's not cloying or preachy. She's candid about her views of homosexuality. Her appearance on Pat Robertson's ultra-conservative talk show "The 700 Club," "urging the Christian community to be more open-minded, loving, and inclusive," angered many of her gay and Christian fans alike, and Chenoweth is genuinely surprised and saddened by the results: boycotts of her shows and albums were called for from both sides and she was fired from a stint on the Women of Faith tour.

The first week we worked together, Kristin and I had a long conversation about that and other smackdowns she's sustained because of her open support for gay marriage, which actually goes well with her unapologetic old-time religion. (Kind of like the way she carried off Jimmy Choo slingbacks with a Snuggie.) When we parted, I sent her home with a little English assignment: "Questions for God When I Meet Him." A few queries on Kristin's list:
Who killed JonBenét? And does she pretty much own the pageant circuit up here?

Why is forgiveness so dang hard?

Why is slapstick so dang funny?

Who is the sadistic genius behind cellulite? Lord, please tell me you did not have anything to do with that.

Does restless legs syndrome actually exist? And is there something about it that compels the person to sit in the front row?

Why would someone go to all the trouble it takes to be a serial killer? Is there always some kind of Sweeney Todd backstory?

Where are the mates to most of my socks?

Does sugar cause cancer? And if not, what does?

Does sugar cure cancer? And if not, what does?

Why do so many people find homosexuality scarier than war?

What if you made it so that hate would cause hemorrhoids? Just an idea.

For the full list (along with Advice for Actors from Cool Aunt Kristin, recipes for White Trash Cookies and Chenolicious No Calorie Left Behind Pie, a guest appearance by the amazing Aaron Sorkin, and a great story about coming of age on Broadway) hitch a ride to the bookstore in the handiest magic bubble and hook up a copy of A Little Bit Wicked: Life, Love, and Faith in Stages Kristin's book tour includes appearances on Good Morning America and The View this week and events in New York, Philly, and her native OK. Catch her if you can!


mamele said…
i lurv her. and congrats, joni! that "questions for god" was a brilliant assignment.

i'm so cranky about Pushing Daisies being cancelled. loved that show, esp its candy-bright production design and yummy costuming. and when they had her sing!
Kathryn said…
Good for her and good for you! I think it's sad that she got so much flack for what she said on that 700 club tour, but then again I'm not surprised. People who are uniters often run into that problem--of alienating both sides.

Great project, though! And good work!
Michelle said…
You did an outstanding job, Joni. The book is a delight - funny, even in sad moments. A true joy to read.
I walked into Barnes & Noble today, and there it was, front and center on the very first table as I walked in. Great placement (Go, Team Co-op!) great cover, vibrant personality, and terrific fun. What could be better?
Dad said…
Your K Chen did a great job on Leno, and don't poke fun at the Snuggie thing. They look warm and comfortable, especially for us old folks.
We are very very proud of you Joni.
Thanks for being you.
Be Fantastic
Guess I know what *somebody's* pop's getting come next Christmas. ;)
Dorothy Hagan said…
Way cool thing this morning...I was listening to AM 740 (some people ride roller coasters when they want to be scared to death; I listen to talk radio), anyway who did I hear but Miss Kristin talking up her (and Joni's)book! Yeah!

Joni, I am so happy for you and your family. I hope this book brings all the literary and financial blessings you have SO earned! Congratulations!
karen said…
I just have to say that you completely captured the Kristin I know and love. Awesome job!
P.S. Why oh WHY won't she and A-So go ahead and get married already? I know...none of my beeswax :)

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