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Amy Poehler

Sasheer Zamata on 'Saturday Night Live' and surprising audiences with her stand-up

Sasheer Zamata on 'Saturday Night Live' and surprising audiences with her stand-up

When Sasheer Zamata joined the cast of “Saturday Night Live” early last year, controversy and criticism surrounded the sketch-comedy institution.

A national conversation about the show's lack of diversity had grown increasingly louder, and Zamata — only the fifth black female cast member in “SNL's” 40-year history — became the embodiment of a pop-culture debate, whether she liked it or not. So Zamata handled the scrutiny the way many others would: She logged off.

“I quit Facebook. I stopped...

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