What makes Kristin Chenoweth such a good interview? Maybe it’s her spunky attitude, comic timing or self-deprecating honesty. All of these attributes were on display in 2010, when the star was interviewed countless times to promote Promises, Promises, Glee and more. Chenoweth also jumped on her soapbox to defend co-star Sean Hayes, who was named in a Newsweek article suggesting that gay actors struggle with playing straight characters. Whether sharing pageant waving tips with Wendy Williams, playing a crazy game of monkey tic-tac-toe with Jimmy Fallon or sending up her lack of a nomination on the Tony Awards telecast, Cheno displayed her strength of character and good humor. We also couldn’t resist throwing in a bit of her Tony Awards shtick. Let’s let her speak for herself with these quotable quotes from 2010.
“Dear Lord, please help me get the monkey in the bucket.” —while playing tic-tac-toe with stuffed monkeys on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, September 28
“I think Jay-Z is probably going to be contacting me very soon, especially after he sees [Promises, Promises]. It’s really up his alley. We’re going to collaborate on something. He’ll be thinking, ‘Big Pimpin’ 2, that should definitely be Kristin.’ [Laughs.] Because when you think of Big Pimpin’, you think of me.”—responding to whether she’d ever put out an album of rap covers in Vanity Fair, April 16
“Audiences aren’t giving a darn about who a person is sleeping with or his personal life. Give me a break! We’re actors first, whether we’re playing prostitutes, baseball players, or the Lion King. Audiences come to theater to go on a journey. It’s a character and it’s called acting, and I’d put Hayes and his brilliance up there with some of the greatest actors period... No one needs to see a bigoted, factually inaccurate article that tells people who deviate from heterosexual norms that they can’t be open about who they are and still achieve their dreams... I encourage Newsweek to embrace stories which promote acceptance, love, unity and singing and dancing for all!” —defending co-star Sean Hayes’ ability to play a straight character to Newsweek.com, May 7
“Well, I think Mr. Setoodeh. His first name is Ramin—we call him ramen noodles—no offense. I think Mr. Noodles—God bless him—he didn’t do his research. You guys know how important it is to say things well. I don’t think he said it well.” —about Newsweek writer Ramin Setoodeh’s article on The View, June 3
“This is my personal fave. Pay attention: Long, long, short, short, short…pearls. That’s it!” —explaining how to wave like a pageant queen on The Wendy Williams Show, September 27
"I tweeted I felt fat one day. Every woman has 'fat' days! And everybody was like, 'Don’t tweet that for young girls to see.' I thought, Oh my God, take a chill pill. I love food! I just had 21 Rolos and didn’t vomit them up!"—on keeping it real to Time Out New York, March 8
“Heaven! She’s an amazing, amazing singer… I really miss her because we had such great chemistry on stage and I think that’s very hard to replicate in that show.” —on what it was like to work with Wicked co-star Idina Menzel to Autostraddle, July 30
“She’s definitely going to come back. She’s going to come back in the spring for probably a couple episodes… and I have no idea how drunk she will be." —on the return of her Glee character April Rhodes to The Examiner, December 19
“I love to bake, so Sunday nights I will try a new recipe. It’s a challenge. For example, last night I was heating up the oven and didn’t realize that the lady who cleans my house had put Tupperware in there.” —on how she spends her downtime to The New York Times, September 24
“Tweeting on Ambien is not a good idea. Sometimes, like millions of Americans, I have trouble sleeping and I take that. I have tried to hide my own phone from my own self. Haiti was a devastating thing to see. I was watching [the news coverage] one night on Ambien, and I tweeted that I wanted to adopt a baby from Haiti. The next day I was asked when the adoption’s going through and I was like, ‘What?!?’” —on the dangers of mixing the sleep aid with a smartphone on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, March 23
“I was raised Southern Baptist, so I went to Southern Baptist Church camp. And that’s where I learned to kiss.” —on how she spent her childhood summers on Late Show with David Letterman, July 13
Kristin Chenoweth: “What? I’m reading my thank-you speech!”
Sean Hayes: “But you didn’t win anything. You’re here to present Best Featured Actor in a Musical.”
Kristin: “I’m sorry, Sean. I didn’t hear anything you said after I didn’t win anything.”
Sean: "You didn’t win an award."
Kristin: "That’s unusual for me."
Sean: "In this particular case, you weren’t even nominated…"