Sasheer Zamata to Debut as New Saturday Night Live Cast Member

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Saturday Night Live will soon have a new Oprah Winfrey. And Michelle Obama. And Condoleezza Rice.

The iconic NBC sketch comedy series has responded to its lack-of-diversity criticism by hiring Sasheer Zamata. The comedian will debut on the January 18 episode of the program, which will be hosted by Drake.

Sasheer Zamata Picture

Zamata trained at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York and will become SNL's first African-American female since Maya Rudolph left five years ago.

After hiring six new cast members prior to this season, none of whom were black, Lorne Michaels held auditions across the country last month for someone to fill this role.

And Zamata - a graduate of the University of Virginia and someone who has appeared on Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell on FX, and Inside Amy Schumer - beat out stiff competition to land the part.

We wish her the best of luck. We'll be watching.

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