Writer and performer Sandy Gelfound was born in Miami, Florida, the fourth of six children. For her first nine years, she lived in Hialeah, Florida, a Cuban suburb famous for its dog tracks. Hialeah offered great discounts on VA homes, and her dad was able to purchase one for a few hundred dollars….if only he bought a dozen!
After traveling through the U.S. and Mexico, her family eventually settled in Venice, California, where she attended high school. She became a cheerleader, and there was no turning back. Little did she know that she was in the rookies trying out for the pros.
She kept cheering all the way to the NFL, where she was a cheerleader for the Raiders for five years. With aspirations to be an actress, she auditioned for a musical comedy review at Santa Monica College and got a part in all the musical numbers, on the condition she’d never try to bring her pompoms on stage.
She quickly took to being on stage. Looking for a vocation that would be more stable than cheerleading, Sandy turned to stand-up comedy. Her first standup performance involved playing the castanets and nothing else. Gradually she mastered the art of telling jokes while clacking at the same time.
Slowly but surely she developed an act around being an NFL Cheerleader and Jewish, and the guilt she felt for cheering for the Raiders instead of owning the team. She has performed as a stand-up alongside some of the greats, including Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno.
Her versatility has brought her to many venues, from Evening at the Improv to shows on Black Entertainment Television and the Jewish Television Network. She has performed at the Improv in Las Vegas and Tahoe, as well as for our troops stationed at air force bases in Okinawa and Guam. Feature film credits include Bob Fosse’s Star 80.
In addition to performing her show on Broadway, Sandy hopes to launch her play into a movie or a sitcom, “The Shmaltz Factor” or “Two and a Half Rabbis” or “Law and Loopholes” or “From Pom Poms to Paos” on the Oy! Network. Sandy wrote and performs more than 43 characters in her highly acclaimed one-woman show, The Kosher Cheerleader.