She jokes about her motivation: "I'm told that if I did this video that my nephew can have a lead part. He wants to play Mame in Auntie Mame. This video is not usable unless I'm guaranteed that he can play Mame. No, I was kidding."
There really is a nephew, sixth grader Alex Fey, who played a role in the actress' making the promotion.
Phoenixville tax attorney Lisa Starczewski explains that Facetime Community Theatre grew from her passion for acting that began as a child and led to her marriage - she and her husband met taking part in a high school production - and teaching stagecraft to children. Starczewski directed plays at Phoenixville High for eight years and, in 2008, began teaching at Facetime Performing Arts Studio, a separate business.
Alex - son of Tina Fey's brother, Peter, and his wife, Dee - has been a Studio student for four years and was part of the ensemble of Oliver!
After seeing a tape of one of Alex's performances and getting some nudging from her brother and sister-in-law, Tina decided to film the pitch.
No scripting was necessary, said Starczewski. "She's very creative, and she didn't need any direction."
The timing was serendipitous, with Facetime's annual fund-raising concert scheduled for Friday night at Franklin Commons in Phoenixville. (No, there won't be an appearance by the former SNL writer/newsbabe, Sarah Palin impersonator, and Date Night movie star.)
How much money is raised will determine how many of Facetime's dreams can be fulfilled.
Eventually, Starczewski hopes, Facetime will have its own permanent performing space, with shows year-round for grown-ups as well as programs for children.
Because schools keep cutting arts funding, programs like Facetime are becoming more important, Tina Fey says on the tape, adding that gifts aren't limited to Pennsylvanians. "If you're coming from Delaware, they'll take your money, too. Jersey money, that's good, too," she says. "We'll take it as far north as Connecticut."
Watch Tina Fey's pitch for Facetime Community Theatre at www.philly.com/ tinafey
For more information, visit www.facetimecommunitytheatre.org.
Contact Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or email@example.com.