Arundel High School graduate Wanda Sykes once had a pretty good job at the National Security Agency, but left it at age 27 to pursue a career in comedy. It has paid off, as she has become well-known for her standup shows and roles on Curb Your Enthusiasm, Ice Age and other programs and films.
She's back in the area this week with a show at The Music Center at Strathmore in North Bethesda.
Sykes, who grew up in Gambrills, spoke this week with the Washington Post Express and offered some details on her life as a procurement officer at the NSA and her decision to leave.
"Something in me said, 'This is not my life; I’m not doing this [expletive] for 40 years.' I didn’t even look in the classifieds, because I knew whatever I was supposed to be doing was not going to be advertised."
The 47-year-old now has twin toddlers at home, and jokes in the interview that she spends more time worrying about Sesame Street characters than national security.
Sykes also spoke to Washingtonian Magazine in 2010, and talked a little bit about her Arundel High experience.
"I loved Arundel—it was a great school. We had a nice mix of kids, and once I started taking acting arts and drama, that’s when it really got fun."
Wanda Sykes will perform at Strathmore at 8 p.m. Tickets are available.