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Former ‘Saturday Night Live’ Star to Lead Homecoming Parade

Ana Gasteyer named parade grand marshal; Wildcats host Nebraska Cornhuskers Oct. 18

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Broadway, TV and film actress and Northwestern University alumna Ana Gasteyer, a former cast member of the popular Emmy Award-winning late night television sketch comedy show “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) will return to campus Friday, Oct. 17, to serve as grand marshal of the University’s 2014 Homecoming Parade.

Gasteyer also will be an honored guest during the celebratory events planned for the University’s Evanston campus during the Oct. 17-19 Homecoming weekend. (The Football Luncheon and the Alumni Panel will both be available as webcasts online at

“My Northwestern experience changed the trajectory of everything that followed,” Gasteyer said. “I’m so looking forward to celebrating such an influential part of my personal history with others who are fortunate enough to also be a part of our amazing community!”

Gasteyer will lead the Friday night (Oct. 17) parade as it makes its way down Sheridan Road. She also will announce the names of this year’s homecoming king and queen at the pep rally immediately following the parade. Earlier that day, she will participate in a reunion panel for registered reunion guests and Northwestern students only.

Homecoming Week 2014 at Northwestern kicks off Saturday, Oct. 11 and culminates a week later with the annual Homecoming football game on Saturday, Oct. 18. This year’s theme is “Willie in the Windy City” and is centered around Chicago.

Homecoming weekend also is Reunion Weekend for Northwesetrn alumni from the classes of 1954, 1959, 1964, 1969, 1974, 1979, 1984, 1989, 1994, 1999, 2004, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014.

As this year’s grand marshal, Gasteyer will ride in the lead car during the 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 17 parade as it works its way south from the intersection of Sheridan Road and Lincoln Street, to Chicago Avenue and Sheridan Road. The parade will be followed by a 6:45 p.m. Pep Rally in Deering Meadow -- the two acres of open green space between the Charles Deering Library at 1970 Campus Drive and Sheridan Road.

During the pep rally, Gasteyer will announce the results of the Homecoming court voting and crown this year’s homecoming king and queen.

Both the 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 17 Homecoming Parade and 6:45 p.m. Pep Rally are open to the public, as is the 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 18 prime-time Homecoming kick-off game between the Northwestern Wildcats and the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Northwestern’s Ryan Field. The game will be televised nationally on the Big Ten Network (BTN). A limited amount of tickets to the Homecoming game remain available for purchase online at or by calling Northwestern’s athletic department directly at 888-GO-PURPLE.


During the six years Gasteyer appeared on SNL, she created some of the show’s most memorable characters, including middle school music teacher “Bobbie Moughan-Culp,” National Public Radio host “Margaret Jo,” and Lilith Fair poetress “Cinder Calhoun.” She also did “spot-on” impressions of television personality Martha Stewart, singer Celine Dion and former U. S. Secretary of State, U.S. Senator and First Lady of the United States, Hilary Rodham Clinton.

Recently, she starred on ABC’s “Suburgatory” and she currently acts as a brand ambassador for Weight Watchers Online. She has performed in a range of theater productions since her Broadway debut in the revival of “The Rocky Horror Show.” She starred in “Wicked” on Broadway as ‘Elphaba’ and originated the role for the Chicago production, which earned her a Joseph Jefferson (“Jeff”) Award nomination. On film, Gasteyer will soon be seen in “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” and she has appeared in “Rapture-Palooza,” “Peeples,” “Fun Size,” “Dare” and “Mean Girls,” among others. Her television credits include HBO’s “Girls,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “The Good Wife,” Showtime’s “Reefer Madness,” and many more. Gasteyer also just released her debut jazz album on iTunes titled “I’m Hip.” For more on Gasteyer, visit

Gasteyer received a bachelor of science in speech, theater and performance studies from Northwestern’s School of Communication in 1989.

For more Homecoming 2014 information, visit

Topics: Alumni, Events

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