Meet Pallavi Sastry & Gabrielle Ruiz of What Are Friends For
On What Are Friends For, Gabrielle Ruiz & Pallavi Sastry, dive deep and revel in all the facets of platonic love. But their friendship wasn’t always secure.
After originally meeting on a summer theatre job in 2007, GxP were mostly colleagues who awkwardly interacted in New York City in audition waiting rooms or once at a street fair in Queens. After genuinely reconnecting over health and wellness in 2012, they learned to get over themselves and carry on vulnerable conversations without the pressure of entertainment industry competition. They knew they wanted to work together again one day; they were simply waiting for the right project.
They’ve tackled issues such as working with friends, race and friendship, building community, recovering from trauma, mentoring, friendship breakups, and what is a “best friend?”
Past episode guests have included Javier Muñoz (Hamilton), Alysia Reiner (Orange is the New Black), Harvey Guillen (What We Do in the Shadows), Travis McElroy (My Brother, My Brother, and Me), Melissa Barrera (Vida), Karen David (Fear the Walking Dead), Kelli O’Hara (The King and I), Poorna Jagannathan (Never Have I Ever), Brittany Snow (Pitch Perfect), and more.
WAFF Podcast releases new episodes on Tuesdays on all major podcast platforms. Exclusive vodcast episodes and the iconic WAFF Live Shows are available exclusively on Patreon at www.patreon.com/waffpodcast.
In 2020, as they were making plans to bring Gabrielle onto WAFF Podcast…BOOM…pandemic. And, Black Lives Matter reaches a tipping point. Both were thrown by the events in our country, and they weren’t sure whether to proceed with something like a podcast while there were so many other important issues happening in the world. But they realized that during a time of such global turbulence, it’s crucial to have friends to lean on.
The two friends decided that the pandemic was the perfect time to reimagine this podcast and quarantine was an opportunity to reinvent how to nurture our friendships from afar. With the help of their wise guestfriends, GxP have made WAFF a beacon of platonic love. Proving that meaningful, and sometimes uncomfortable conversations are necessary for a less polarized and more empathetic society.
We at What Are Friends For Podcast pride ourselves in our ability to dive deep into the joyful, meaningful, and uncomfortable conversations about platonic love in a socially distanced world; whether near, far, or 6-feet apart. We feel that the conversation around platonic love rather than romantic love is one that’s just starting to be discussed, but is essential to our overall mental health and the health of our friendships. Thus we are proud to be among the extraordinary group of people who are entering this conversation.
Gabrielle: My mentor always preaches, “Good luck is preparation meeting opportunity.” I also live by the standard of what I do is “show business” not “show begging”. Success to me is passionately pursuing without apology and bringing the next generation of leaders along with you.
Pallavi: I’m into the show business and show begging. For me, I always lead with gratitude and to the best of my ability approach everything in my life with some combination of grit, humility, and resilience. Anything done with those intentions is a success. Lastly, I approach my work from a place of service. If we do what we do to serve others, it’ll always be successful.