Teal Sherer

 

Most people think I got the name “Teal” because my eyes are so blue. The truth is I was named after my dad’s favorite breed of duck to hunt, Teal. I’m not joking. My father named me after an animal he enjoyed killing.


I grew up just outside of Knoxville, Tennessee in a cool log home (not cabin) that my parents designed on 4 acres of land.

Now here’s the bad news. When I was 14, three high school friends and I were on our way to see a Labor Day fireworks show when we got into a terrible car accident. I broke my back and became a paraplegic.


After that, my life changed drastically. Thankfully, I went to Shepherd Center, one of the best rehab centers in the country. With time, hard work, and the support of my family and friends, I became fully independent in my wheelchair.


I went to college at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta and that’s where I caught the acting bug. If I wasn’t performing in plays like The House of Bernarda Alba and Antigone, I was stage-managing, selling tickets or ushering.

I also performed with Full Radius Dance Company, which is a physically integrated (using dancers with and without disabilities) professional modern dance company.

Then in 2004, while still living in Atlanta, I was cast in my first Hollywood film, HBO’s Emmy Award winning Warm Springs—starring Kenneth Branagh, Cynthia Nixon, and Kathy Bates.

Click here and you’ll find an article I wrote about my experience on the set with Ken. (And yes, he lets me call him “Ken”!)

Shortly after that, I moved to Los Angeles with my black cat Scarlett.


In 2007, I was cast as a series regular on the NBC Universal comedy pilot
I’m with Stupid. It was developed by the Farrelly Brothers and the director was Linwood Boomer, the creator of Malcolm in the Middle. It was an experience of a lifetime!


2008 was a great year too.  I did my first national commercial for Liberty Mutual. It was directed by Laurence Dunmore, the director of The Libertine with Johnny Depp.  Click here to view it. 


I also appeared on stage with Dustin Hoffman, James Cromwell, Annette Bening, and Richard Schiff in American Voices at the Broad Theater in Santa Monica.

You should also know I was a founding member of Blue Zone Productions - a theatre company that promoted actors with disabilities. I got to play the role of “Honey” in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? at the NoHo Arts Center. 

                     


I also produced and starred in the Pulitzer Prize winning play Proof.  I’m the first person with a disability to play the lead role of Catherine.  Check out our review in LA WEEKLY.

The reviews were fantastic!  Click here for more info.

In 2012, I created My Gimpy Life - an online comedy series that’s loosely based on my life.  I won the 2013 Best Female Comedy Performance at the International Academy of Web Television Awards for my role in the show!  You can check out season one of My Gimpy Life here.

I can be seen in the third and fourth season of the award winning web series, The Guild.  I’m recurring on the show as “Venom” - a total bitch on wheels.  Playing a villain is so much fun!   To view episodes, visit The Guild ‘s website.

In addition to acting and producing, I stay busy as a member of the SAG/AFTRA Performers with Disabilities Committee.  I also like to surf, read, drink red wine and spend time with my German Shepherd.