Host Craig Ferguson Met His Match in Shakespeare Society Student

July 16, 2012

Stephanie Gebhardt '14 will not lack an answer when asked for highlights of her summer vacation.

During the May 23 taping of The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, the California native was selected from the audience for an impromptu interview. The clip is viewable on YouTube.

"The experience was awesome," recalls Gebhardt, an environmental studies major and member of Wellesley's Shakespeare Society. "I love Craig Ferguson and his show, so my mom got tickets for us to go watch a taping while I was home in L.A."

Gebhardt and her mother tried to get into a front row where producers seat only women, whom they often refer to during the show. That wasn't possible but they did get seated in the middle of the second row.

When it came time for Ferguson to pick an audience member to join him on stage, he pointed directly to Gebhardt and said, "I want to talk to her; I like her necklaces." After that, says Gebhardt, "It was about 60 seconds before they were taping. I got down from the audience, someone pinned a mic to my shirt, and they told me to look at the camera. Nothing was prepped. The only question he asked before the cameras were rolling was my name. It was a total coincidence that he started doing Shakespearean asides. I couldn't believe it! I was a little scared, but loved every moment of it. When we were done rolling, he gave me a hug. There wasn't really time for me to do anything else but stand there smiling like an idiot and answer his questions."

After her exciting week at home, Gebhardt headed to Washington, D.C., for an internship at the Environmental Protection Agency in the office of the press secretary. She works down the hall from EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, and part of her role is to help with the agency's official Facebook and Twitter pages. "It's sort of a dream internship," Gebhardt reports. In the fall she will study in Ireland for a semester.