(CBS Local)– This weekend is a big one for Abby McEnany.
The improv comedian will debut her brand new show on Showtime called “Work In Progress” about a 45-year-old woman named Abby who explores identity, sexuality and relationships. McEnany stars in the show and co-created the series with Tim Mason. While the show dives into incredibly important topics, McEnany has been doing that on stage with her comedy for a long time.
“It wasn’t hard to talk about this stuff because I do talk about mental illness and family and stuff like that,” said McEnany in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “It’s weird that there’s a character named Abby and we meet her and hear about her faults and struggles. A lot of it is trying to erase shame about stuff. I’m not there. I have no shame about my mental illness, but I have shame about my weight. I don’t want to have shame about my weight. The way to get through it is to talk about it and try to be the person you want to be.”
McEnany has spent years in Chicago doing improv comedy. The comedian loves using the platform to tell stories and connect with her audience on a deeper level.
“I was just diagnosed with clinical depression five years ago,” said McEnany. “There’s so many people that I know that struggle with this stuff. We got to lose the stigma about that. I think it [improv] is the purest art form. It’s beautiful and you’re up there and it involves trusting other people. I have a really hard time trusting and sometimes you fail and fail hard. It’s just a wonderful community. I started taking classes at 24 and I’m 51 now. You start working with people you want to work with and really love.”
“Work In Progress” premieres Sunday, December 8 on Showtime.