CBS Diversity Comedy Showcase Has Its 2018 Cast


CBS has announced the 21 funny folks who will be participating in its 2018 Diversity Comedy Showcase. Their performances will be during six shows running January 23-26 at the El Portal Theatre in Los Angeles. Check the list below.

The naming of this year’s cast comes in the wake of the showcase’s director, writer-producer Rick Najera resigning after an investigation into inappropriate comments he made. “After looking into these reports and a discussion with Mr. Najera, he has resigned from his role with the Diversity Comedy Showcase,” the network said at the time.

About two weeks later, CBS announced that it had replaced Najera with Grace Parra and Stephen Guarino and named Nahreen Tarzi and Chris Eckert as head writers for the 2018 showcase.

But on with the good stuff. Here are the 2018 players, along with where they’re from and where they’ve trained and/or appeared:

James III, Chicago
Upright Citizens Brigade NY

Brianna Baker, Rantoul, IL
Second City and i.O. Chicago

Jorge Emanuel Berrios, Miami
The Second City Hollywood and Upright Citizens Brigade Los Angeles

Sheila Carrasco, Chicago
The Groundlings Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre

Joe Conti, Vernon, NJ
This Is Us, Scandal, Dear White People

Tesiana Elie, Queens NY
The Ellen Show

Ashleigh Hairston, Seattle
Upright Citizens Brigade Los Angeles and i.O. West in Hollywood

Frank Garcia-Hejl, Ennis, TX
Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre (New York City/Los Angeles), Four Day Weekend Theater

Leslie-Anne Huff, San Fernando Valley
The Groundlings Sunday Company (three terms)

Leah Lewis, Orlando
The Voice, Gamers Guide to Pretty Much Everything

Rocío Lopez, Guadalupe, CA
New York University; Theater of the Oppressed, Rio de Janeiro; Upright Citizens Brigade Los Angeles

Peter Kim, Queens, NY
Second City, Upright Citizens Brigade, Annoyance

Che Landon, New York City
Upright Citizens Brigade in Los Angeles and New York and The William Esper Studios

Jay Lee, Saratoga, CA
BA in Dramatic Arts; TV’s Colony

Jay Pichardo, Los Angeles
i.O. West

Percy Rustomji, Orange County, CA
The Groundlings,; Anthony Meindl’s Actor Workshop; Flappers Comedy Club, Burbank

Nalini Sharma, Atlanta
Second City, Upright Citizens Brigade, the Pack Theater (Los Angeles)

Joanna Sotomura, Honolulu
Second City, Upright Citizens Brigade, the Pack Theater

Steve Szlaga, Novi, MI
Groundlings Sunday Company, Upright Citizens Brigade Los Angele

Mishka Thebaud, Miami
York University; TV’s Schitt’s Creek, Dark Matter

Dane Troy, Atlanta
The Groundlings, iO West, The Second City: Hollywood & The Upright Citizens Brigade Los Angeles

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