Vanessa Bayer lampooned more than a few celebrities during her seven-year tenure on Saturday Night Live. The actress became a staple due to her spot-on impressions, including that uncanny impersonation of Jennifer Aniston’s Rachel Green from Friends. However, Bayer gained true recognition for her ability to mimic a young Miley Cyrus. The actress famously performed the role in front of Cyrus herself and, now, Bayer has revealed that she also did the impression in front of the star’s mother as well.
To date, Miley Cyrus has hosted Saturday Night Live three times, with her hosting debut taking place in 2011. While reflecting on meeting the people she’s mimicked, Vanessa Bayer recalled working with Cyrus during her first time on the show and discussed the reaction from Cyrus’ mom, who was also present at the time:
The craziest one was Miley Cyrus because I had never met her before, and I was doing this Miley Cyrus impression. It wasn’t that it wasn’t flattering. We both have really big mouths and that was kind of most of the impression. So, she came to the show and she hosted... I remember being so freaked out and then we were rehearsing it later and her mom and her sister were on the floor. Her mom was so nice about it. Her mom was like, ‘You know, we love The Miley Cyrus Show. It keeps us laughing for hours.’ I remember telling my parents about it, and my dad was like, ‘Really? Because If I feel like if I was her parent I’d be a little offended.’ But it was always out of love.
The thought of performing the impression in front of Miley Cyrus sounds nerve-racking enough, but having to do it in front of her mother honestly sounds pretty cringey. However, it seems that Vanessa Bayer didn’t experience any jitters when faced with the situation. It’s also nice to see that both Cyrus and her mother were pleased with the impression. And as Bayer continued to explain on the Literally with Rob Lowe podcast, what was even more impressive is that Cyrus responded to the impersonation so well at such a young age:
[Miley] was so young. I think she was like 18. It’s a lot to have someone impersonate you. She was always such a good sport about it.
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and, in Vanessa Bayer’s case, that definitely seems to ring true. If you’ve yet to see Vanessa Bayer’s impression, you can check out her performance, alongside Miley Cyrus, in the video below:
Most Saturday Night Live fans would agree that Vanessa Bayer’s comedic skills are missed on the show. Still, she’s left plenty of great sketches we can still revisit.
Saturday Night Live returns this Saturday, March 27, at 11:30 p.m. ET with host Maya Rudolph and musical guest Jack Harlow.