Julia Scotti

Julia Scotti by 1091 Pictures

In her biography, Julia Scotti describes her comedy career as “corposo” — Italian for “a rich, full-bodied wine.” It’s an apt metaphor for someone who, like a rich wine, improves with age. After performing the first 20 years of her career as Rick Scotti, she came out as Julia after a 10-year hiatus. Her comedy, she tells GO, “became more honest and more relatable” after she came out as a trans woman. “The great comedy writer Bill Persky had four rules for writing comedy: be truthful, stay human, don’t reach for ugly, and be vulnerable,” she says. “Coming out allowed me to do all of those things and grow as an artist. That is my success. Anything that comes from living that authentic life is a byproduct.” So far, the byproduct has been pretty good for Scotti. Her return to comedy has been met with critical acclaim from high places. Recently, she was a quarter finalist on “America’s Got Talent,” earning praise from the notoriously hard-nosed Simon Cowell, who told her: “You genuinely made me laugh.” She also has a best-selling comedy CD, “Hello Boys … I’m Back!” and appeared in Showtime’s “More Funny Women of a Certain Age” in 2020. But despite the accolades, the most rewarding part of her career, she says, is really the audience. “As a comedian, hearing audiences roar with laughter really lights me up,” Scotti says. “In the past, audience members have come up to me after the show and told me that they had lost a loved one recently, and my show was their first night out. I had one person tell me that they had just been diagnosed with cancer earlier that week and needed to laugh again just to feel like there was hope. Things like that make it all worthwhile.” —RK

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