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‘SNL’ looks for black women, but what about other minorities?

‘SNL’ looks for black women, but what about other minorities?
The cast of the 2012 CBS Diversity Showcase, spotlighting young performers of color.
(Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times)

Under fire for its historic lack for black female cast members, “Saturday Night Live” is holding auditions to add an African American woman to the cast.

But will it be enough?

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The veteran series sponsored a showcase exclusively for black women last week at the Groundlings Theatre and held another showcase in New York, although sources declined to say whether that it was also for black women exclusively. At least one additional showcase will be held.

The search has commenced after cast member Jay Pharoah complained in October that the show was too white.

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Lorne Michaels, creator of the series, has said finding a black woman for the cast is a “priority.”

Although the show appears to be moving forward with trying to add a black woman, it remains to be seen whether the current effort is more than a stopgap attempt to silence critics or if more efforts are underway to add other ethnic minorities besides African Americans to the predominantly white cast.

“SNL” has hired only white performers from CBS’ annual Diversity Sketch Comedy Showcase featuring mostly people of color — young blacks, Latinos, Asians and Indians.

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One participant in the 2011 showcase was current “SNL” performer Kate McKinnon, who is gay.

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