Bella Ciao is a silent film showgirl living in a pre-code world, a burlesque performer and model of indeterminate origin and determined originality. Inspired by the vamps and coquettes of classic Hollywood, Bella brings a glamorous sensuality and theatrical flair to her acts. Whether performing on a bar top or in a ballroom, Bella Ciao is a cool and classy dame.
Bella is a regular performer with Original Tease, as well as a Belmont Bombshell with The Belmont Burlesque Revue, Chicago's longest continuously running burlesque and variety show. She's had the pleasure of performing at The Dirty Show 2014 (Chicago and Detroit), Motoblot 2014, The Road Rocket Rumble 2014 (Indianapolis), and as a special guest star with The Naughty Little Cabaret, Vaudezilla, and Peach Pies Caburlesque (Madison), among many others.
When not bumping and grinding onstage, Bella enjoys surrealism and well-constructed artifice.
Laura Hugg is a stand up comic and performer. She is the host of one the longest running comedy open mics in Chicago, The Globe Pub Comedy Open Mic, a graduate of The Second City Training Center and was a founding member of the sketch comedy troupes BLAIRE and Hi Betty!, as well as the improv group Burning Desires.
Rachael Mason began her career in improvisation at Skidmore College, home of the National College Comedy Festival, with the Ad-Liberal Artists. After graduating with a degree in English Literature, concentrating on Shakespearean Studies, she moved to Chicago to study improv comedy with Del Close. She is now the head of Advanced Improvisation for The Second City where she created the Scenic Improv and Dramatic Improv programs and The History of Satire Series for The Second City Training Center. She has performed musical improv with Baby Wants Candy at The Edinburg Fringe Festival, directed and performed at The Annoyance, played with The Hot Karl at ComedySportz, and had almost every job at iO (where she was Training Center Director for 8 years), done The Spoletto Festival with The Second City National Touring Company, and is currently in the cast of The Second City Improv All-Stars at The Up Comedy Club as well as with Second City's first resident improv show, The Boys every Friday night at 9pm. She is a mom, jerk, and nerd.
Fuzzy Gerdes is a Chicago comedy legend, by which he means that he is old. He directs Blewt Production's nationally syndicated television show "Steve Gadlin's Star Makers", has taught blogging as a college class, and works a day job producing video games. Follow him on Twitter at @fuzzy.
Monique Madrid is a comedian, writer and actor. She spent 10 years in Chicago where she performed with The Second City on Norwegian Cruise Lines and all over the city, in such shows as Impress These Apes, "Bitch, I'll Cut You" - the live late-night talk show where a special guest gets an actual haircut on stage, and as a standup comedian at The Laugh Factory, Zanies and with The Kates, as well as in festivals around the country. Now in Los Angeles, she's an ensemble member in the show "Hell County, Florida" at The Second City, teaches improv with them, works as a freelance writer and interviewer for Splitsider, someecards and other online magazines. She also produces "Two Girls. One Pup." the comedy show you can bring your dog to, and can her work as a hair and makeup artist can seen in commercials, film and television, sometimes she can actually be seen in them too, if and when she gets booked.
Mark Bratton is a fourth generation Chicagoan that completed study at Second City, Chicago; IO, Chicago and Annoyance Theater. In addition to his tenure as an original cast member of Pimprov, his stage appearances include "Out of the Blue" with Live Bait Theater and "Words" with Second City, Chicago among others.
In vast contrast, Mark is also a twenty-eight year veteran of The Chicago Police Department.
Brooke Breit is a resident stage alum of the Second City e.t.c. (A Clown Car Named Desire and Apes of Wrath). She also performed with The Second City National Touring Company and numerous other shows at Second City, iO Chicago and The Annoyance. She can currently been seen in Improv All Stars (UP Comedy Club) and Whirled News Tonight (iO Chicago). Brooke is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis. Brooke loves coffee, pizza and her family (not necessarily in that order).
Aaron Todd Douglas is a theatre practitioner who acts,
directs, adapts and teaches. He is a
member of the Acting Faculty at Northwestern University and a member in good
standing of AEA and SAG/AFTRA.
He is a founding ensemble member of Congo Square Theatre
Company, where his acting credits include their multiple Jeff Award winning
production of Seven Guitars, The Piano Lesson, Before it Hits Home, Spunk, and Ali. He originated the role of Flip in the world premiere of Stick Fly by Lydia Diamond (the play was
later produced on Broadway) and performed in Joe Turner’s Come and Gone at The Goodman Theatre commemorating the
Goodman’s historic completion of Wilson’s Century Cycle.
Directing projects include: Ruined (Eclipse Theatre), Radio
Golf (Raven Theatre), The Nativity
(Congo Square/The Goodman), 12 Angry Men
(Raven Theatre, Jeff Award Best Ensemble, nomination Best Director), Smash Hit by Steve Broadnax (Cultural
Conversations Festival), Pill Hill
(Black Theatre Alliance Award – Best Director, Best Production ETA Creative
Arts), Talented Tenth (Black Theatre
Alliance Award – Best Production), African
Company Presents Richard III (Congo Square Theatre Company).
Aaron is a former company member at Cincinnati Shakespeare
Festival where he appeared in numerous productions including Much Ado About
Nothing, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar, Macbeth, The Alchemist, Hamlet, Three
Musketeers, and twice played the title role in Othello. He later directed A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Outstanding Play- Cincinnati
Entertainment Awards for Theater).
Other acting credits include: Tree and Wheatley
(Victory Gardens Theatre), Wait Until
Dark (Court Theatre), Journal of
Ordinary Thought (Chicago Theater Company), Iphigenia 2.0 (Next Theatre), Fortunes
of the Moor (ETA Creative Arts), The
State of Mississippi v. Emmet Till (Pegasus Players), Julius Caesar (Chicago Shakespeare), Perfect Mendacity (Steppenwolf), and Measure for Measure (Goodman Theatre).
Kirsten Chan is a Chicago-based actor, writer, eater, and crafter. When she's not secretly documenting the odd behavior of those around her as "research" for her future sitcom, you can find her scoping out the best vegetarian dishes and desserts at restaurants across the country. Kirsten's also an avid DIY-er with an emphasis on special events, party decor, and upcycling. Her first love is and always will be TV, and you can count of her for endless commentary about The Bachelor / Bachelorette, Project Runway, and any sitcom from the 80s - 90s.
Chad Briggs has been a fixture in the Chicago comedy scene for the past several years. In addition to stand up, he's known for his character work and has been taking on more and more acting roles as of late. He can be seen in the independent drama "Hellion" starring Aaron Paul and Juliette Lewis.
Check out Chad Briggs as DK Ediger.
CLICK HERE to see Chad as a father who doesn't have long to live who leaves behind something special for his son.
Tune in February 25th as we interview Chad Briggs live on The Seth Williams Show.