ViacomCBS announced the 15 performers that will star in the 2022 Showcase. The virtual event will stream live on February 8 and 9 at 1pm PT, 4pm PT and 7pm PT.
Showcase has become THE event to look to when it comes to highlighting diverse talent. Since its inception, it has developed into a variety comedy show with bold, nuanced performances and original, creative writing. The show is viewed by senior-level executives, showrunners and casting directors from ViacomCBS properties, as well as other networks and streamers, in addition to talent agents and managers from across the entertainment industry.
Talent from around the country are selected to participate in a month-long virtual writers’ room before traveling to Los Angeles to take part in a three-week shoot on location. Following the wrap of production, performers attend various workshops and panels, on topics ranging from audition technique to a Q&A with esteemed Showcase alumni. Also, each performer is set-up with executive mentors who remain a resource to them as they navigate their careers beyond the Showcase process.
“These 15 multitalented artists, under the leadership of our exceptional creative team, have put together a laugh-out-loud show that we are delighted and proud to share with the industry and beyond,” said Claudia Lyon, Executive Vice President, Talent and Casting, CBS Entertainment, and Dorey Poder, Vice President, Talent and Casting, CBS Entertainment. “It moves us to think of all the time and creative energy they dedicated to this year’s Showcase, which functions as a platform to amplify their voices and demonstrate what they are capable of when given the access and opportunity. We know their passion and work ethic will lead to bright futures, and we look forward to fostering these professional relationships for years to come.”
Check out the teaser below.
For the first time in 17 years, Showcase was filmed entirely on location in Los Angeles instead of performed live on stage, providing the ensemble with on-camera experience.
The exposure from this program has helped launch countless careers through an increase in auditions, bookings, meetings and agent/manager signings. Most recently, the 2021 and 2020 Showcases have resulted in numerous bookings for participants on ViacomCBS properties, including:
4400, The Chi, Games People Play, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, The Neighborhood, SEAL Team, Work In Progress, among others.
Tess Paras returns as executive produce and director of Showcase, and Tyler Davis returns as executive producer and associate director. Calvin Seabrooks joins them as executive producer and head writer, Eddie Mujica joins as producer, and Lauren Walker and Laurie Magers join as consulting producers.
Alumni of Showcase include Emmy Award winners Kate McKinnon, Tiffany Haddish, Punam Patel, Sheila Carrasco, Diona Reasonover, Tien Tran, Ego Nwodim, Leah Lewis, Nico Santos, Drew Tarver, Nicole Byer, among many others.
Register for the event here. Read the bios of the 15 performers starring in this year’s Showcase below.
Name: Afsheen Misaghi
Hometown: Charleston, W.Va.
Education: M.F.A., theater acting, University of Florida; B.A., theater, West Virginia University
Training: Upright Citizen’s Brigade (New York and Los Angeles), The Peoples Improv Theatre
Television: “Normal for Now” (Amazon Prime), FBI: MOST WANTED (CBS)
Stage: “Andy Warhol in Iran” (Barrington Stage), “Threads” (Weathervane), “Shruti Gupta Can Totally Deal” (American Stage Co.)
Digital: “Super Sketch Tuesday” (PITtv), “Yeah I’m FROM From There” (NYC SOLOCOM), “15 Minutes Late” (Kickback Originals/YouTube)
Interesting fact: I watched “The Oprah Winfrey Show” every day from when I was 9 years old until the series finale.
Name: Allison Reese
Hometown: Mesa, Ariz.
Training: The Second City (Chicago), The Annoyance Theatre, iO (Chicago and West), Upright Citizen’s Brigade (Los Angeles)
Television: “Utopia” (Amazon Prime)
Stage: The Second City Touring Company (The Second City), NBC Breakout Festival (The Second City), “Characters Welcome” (Squirrel Theatre), “Studio Eleven” (iO), “Whirled News Tonight” (iO), “Your F*cked Up Relationship” (iO), “You Listen to White People Music?” (The Annoyance), “Matt Damon Improv” (The Annoyance), “NBC Bob Curry Fellowship” (The Second City), “Baby Wine” (The Annoyance), “After Hours” (The Second City), “Trigger Happy” (The Annoyance)
Digital: “In-Diana” (YouTube), “Centered” (YouTube), “Call Me Ripley” (OTV), Kamala Harris Impersonator (TikTok/Twitter)
Interesting fact: For my 16th birthday, I took my friends to a Phoenix Mercury game and was somehow still closeted.
Name: Anna Garcia
Hometown: Beverly Hills, Mich.
Education: B.A., film, University of Michigan
Training: Upright Citizens Brigade (Los Angeles)
Television: “Hacks” (HBO Max), “Superstore” (NBC), “The Goldbergs” (ABC), “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” (FX)
Stage: “Mess Hall” (Upright Citizens Brigade Los Angeles), “That Noise” (Williamstown Theatre Festival), “Huzzah!” (Williamstown Theatre Festival)
Digital: “Bookshelf” (Funny or Die)
Interesting fact: I hold the high score for Galaga at the arcade in my hometown. You should find this very cool!!!
Name: Anosh Michael McAdam
Hometown: Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Education: B.A., psychology, University of British Columbia
Training: Upright Citizen’s Brigade (Los Angeles)
Television: “A Little Late w/ Lilly Singh” (NBC)
Film: “Under The Eiffel Tower” (Netflix, 2018)
Digital: “College Humor: Troopers” (YouTube)
Podcast: “Finding Markus Tronque” (Earwolf)
Interesting fact: Co-wrote a 2021 Super Bowl commercial.
Name: Austin Antoine
Hometown: Laurel, Md.
Education: B.F.A., acting, California Institute of the Arts
Training: California Institute of the Arts
Digital: “Summertime – 2021” (Various Film Platforms)
Interesting fact: I set the Guinness World Record for Longest Freestyle Rap in 2013 (16.5 hours)
Name: Bri Giger
Education: B.F.A., theater arts, University of Arizona;
Training: Upright Citizen Brigade (Los Angeles), IO West. Beverly Hills Playhouse
Stage: National touring one woman show, “Through MY high Eyes” Upright Citizens Brigade (Los Angeles), IO WEST, Dynasty Typewriter, Don’t Tell Mamma, Laugh Factory, The Comedy Store, New York Comedy Club ETC.
Interesting fact: I have a chihuahua named Solange.
Name: Carey Cox
Hometown: El Paso, Texas
Education: B.F.A., musical theater, Santa Fe University of Art and Design; M.F.A., acting, UNC Chapel Hill
Training: Upright Citizen’s Brigade (New York), Queens Theatre “Theater for All” training program
Film: “Woohoo” (A24 films)
Stage: “The Glass Menagerie” (Broadway), “The Glass Menagerie” (Guthrie Theatre), “Barefoot in the Park” (Queens Theatre), “Hans Christian Andersen” (Nashville Children’s Theatre), “Three Sisters,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Seminar,” “We are Proud to Present,” “Trouble in Mind,” “Into the Woods,” “Mary’s Wedding” (Playmakers Repertory Company)
Digital: “Gifted” (Queens Theatre produced webseries)
Interesting fact: I’m also a playwright and a visual artist.
Name: Dickie Hearts
Hometown: Newport News, Va.
Education: B.A., video production and deaf studies, Gallaudet University
Training: Acting for the Camera with Vincent D’Onofrio, Upright Citizen Brigade, Improv 1-4: The Harold (Los Angeles and New York), Acting with Jules Dameron
Television: “Tales of the City” (Netflix), “High Maintenance” (HBOmax), “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee” (TBS), “Grace & Frankie” (Netflix)
Stage: “Maple & Vine” (New York Deaf Theatre), “Stepchild,” (IRT), “My Onliness” (IRT)
Interesting fact: In 2017, Hearts won first place in the national film competition, AT&T Create-A-Thon, taking home the grand prize of $20,000, with the seven-minute horror-comedy short that he wrote, directed and co-starred in: “The Deaf VS The Dead.” This happened before they had two deaf characters on AMC’s “The Walking Dead!”
Name: Glo Tavarez
Hometown: Kissimmee, Fla.
Education: University of Central Florida dropout
Training: I trained at Upright Citizens Brigade (New York) for close to 10 years.
Television: I shot a pilot for Showtime that never got picked up.
Interesting fact: Tell me your sign, and I’ll tell you about yourself.
Name: Jordan Stafford
Hometown: Detroit, Mich.
Education: B.S., theater/fine art, Saginaw Valley State University
Training: The Second City (Chicago), Improv Olympics (Chicago), The Acting Studio (Chicago)
Stage: “The Second City Touring Company” (Chicago), “Teen Cudi Presents: Black Boy Joy” (Comedy Central Stage, LA and The Annoyance Theater, Chicago)
Digital: “Code-Switched Web Series” (YouTube), “Improvising Radical Candor” (Second City Works), “Porky Pine” (The Second City, YouTube) “Blue Whales” (Teen Cudi, YouTube), “Peas and Carrots Web Series” (YouTube) “Open Sesame” (YouTube)
Interesting fact: I’ve illustrated three children’s books.
Name: Lureena Cornwell
Hometown: Pawtucket, R.I.
Education: Jacqueline M Walsh School of the Performing Arts
Training: Providence Improv Guild, iO (Chicago)
Television: “Chicago P.D” (NBC)
Film: “Unplugging” and “The Miseducation of Bindu”
Stage: “Studio Eleven” (iO Chicago) and “Hootie Hoo” (iO House Team)
Digital: “Brothers from the Suburbs” (EL-Network)
Interesting fact: Soup connoisseur
Name: Sahana Srinivasan
Hometown: Dallas, Texas
Education: B.S., radio/television/film, The University of Texas at Austin
Training: Lesly Kahn, Groundlings, Cathryn Sullivan’s Acting for Film (Texas)
Credits: Television: “Brainchild” (Netflix), “Insecure” (HBO), “Fear the Walking Dead” (AMC)
Interesting fact: In second grade, I did the weather for my school’s morning announcements, and all the sixth graders asked for my autograph.
Name: Shuang Hu
Hometown: Tianjin, China
Education: Hotel management and international business, Griffith University
Training: Upright Citizen’s Brigade (Los Angeles)
Television: “Ronny Chieng: International Student” (Comedy Central/ABC Australia), “The Family Law” (NBCUniversal/SBS Australia)
Stage: “John” (Outhouse Theatre)
Digital: “Tales from The Stream” (Comedy Central), “Asian Superstitions” (WongFu Productions)
Film: “Beyond The Reef” (The Steve Jaggi Company)
Interesting fact: I was born a twin during the one-child policy era in China, and my mum nearly gave me away to her infertile best friend. That’s where my abandonment issues come from.
Name: Sibel Damar
Hometown: Charlotte, N.C.
Education: B.F.A., acting, University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Training: Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre (New York), The Freeman Studio, The People’s Improv Theatre, Magnet Theatre
Television: FBI (CBS) recurring co-star
Stage: “Characters Welcome” (Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre New York), “Boogie Manja” (The Peoples Improv Theater), “Much Ado About Nothing” (Rude Grooms Theatre), “All’s Well That Ends Well” (Triad Stage), “Les Liasons Dangereuses” (UNCG), “Peter Pan” (UNCG), “Pride and Prejudice” (UNCG), “Iphigenia 2.0” (UNCG)
Digital: “F**k Nice Guys” (Brooklyn Women’s Film Festival/YouTube), “A Rose for Wally” (YouTube), “Polterheist” (YouTube), “Westworld Internet Reviews” (YouTube), “Not Sorry” (YouTube), “Killer Across the Street” (YouTube)
Interesting fact: My sense of smell is five times stronger than the average human. I can see perfectly underwater (sans goggles). I can survive for weeks in the wilderness with only a knife. Alas, I will never be able to fold a fitted sheet.
Name: Steve Han
Hometown: Gainesville, Fla.
Education: B.A., biological sciences, University of Chicago
Training: Second City (Chicago), ImprovOlympic (Chicago)
Television: “The Big Leap” (Fox), “Everything’s Trash” (Freeform), “Work In Progress” (Showtime), “Single Drunk Female” (Freeform), “Chicago Med” (NBC)
Stage: “We Are Asian. We Do Comedy.” (Steppenwolf), “Public Empathy No. 1” (Second City)
Digital: “War On Facebook” (Onion)
Interesting fact: One time at Disney World, a kid tried to take a picture with me because he thought I was Russell from the movie “Up” (I was 23 at the time).