Esposito, Giancarlo 1958–
Giancarlo Esposito 1958–
Best known for his role as Buggin’ Out, the radical agitator in director Spike Lee’s film Do the Right Thing, Giancarlo Esposito is a versatile performer with a substantial background in theater, film, and television. Because of his mixed ethnicity—he is half black, half Italian—he once found himself being offered a disproportionate number of “hoodlum” parts, both black and Hispanic. Disgusted at this narrow range of possibilities and disconcerted that some young fans looked up to the drug dealers he portrayed, he began to turn down potentially lucrative roles if he felt they conveyed the wrong message.
To take up the slack, Esposito pursued the college lecture circuit, speaking to audiences of all colors about racism. He has since appeared on the television series Bakersfield P.D. and in such acclaimed films as Bob Roberts, Malcolm X, Night on Earth, and Fresh. Though he most certainly would have earned more money taking the thug roles he passed up, in 1993, he told Us magazine that he has no regrets. “I made less money this year than the previous year,” he said. “When I realized that I didn’t make any bread but everything’s beautiful, I know I’m with the right people and doing the right things.”
Esposito described his childhood to Robin Epstein of the Progressive, stating “I was raised in Copenhagen [Denmark] and Germany and Italy for the first years of my life and came [to the United States] when I was three or four years old.” Perhaps because his mother, a black opera singer, hailed from Alabama, and his Italian stage-technician father was from Naples, Italy, Esposito was unclear about his ethnic identity, as his mother found out.
“We were in Germany when a delivery man came in,” he told Epstein. “He was an African cat, from the Ivory Coast, so he was really dark. My brother and I ran into a closet and started saying ‘Schwartzer, schwartzer, schwartzer’ [German for black]. We were really afraid of this guy. We thought he was a ghost. My mother looked at him and said, ‘I can’t believe it. I’ve got to really talk to my boys because they don’t even realize that I’m a different color from their father.’ That really frightened her because she knew we were coming to America. I had to learn that I would be discriminated against.”
From the time Esposito began his show business career, he encountered the very syndrome that had concerned his mother. At the age of eight he made his stage debut in the musical Maggie Flynn on Broadway, playing a slave child
Born Giancarlo Giusseppi Alessandro Esposito, c. 1958, in Copenhagen, Denmark; son of an opera singer and a stage technician.
Stage, film, and television actor, 1966—. Stage appearances include Maggie Flynn, The Me Nobody Knows, Lost in the Stars, Seesaw, Miss Moffatt, The American Christmas, Merrily We Roll Along, Don’t Get God Started, Zooman and the Sign, Balm in Gilead, The House of Ramon Iglesias, Distant Fires, and The Root, 1966-93. Television series appearances include Miami Vice, Spenser: For Hire, Legwork, and Bakersfield P.D., 1980s-93. Television film appearances include Go Tell It on the Mountain, Roanoak, Simple Justice, and Mood indigo, 1980s; also appeared in Stolen Moments: Red, Hot + Cool (AIDS documentary), 1994. Film appearances include Taps, 1981; The Cotton Club, 1984; Sweet Lorraine, 1987; School Daze, 1988; Do the Right Thing, 1989; King of New York, 1990; Mo’ Better Blues, 1990; Night on Earth, 1991; Bob Roberts, 1992; Malcolm X, 1992; Amos and Andrew, 1993; Fresh, 1994; and Smoke, 1994. Lecturer on college campuses, c. 1988—.
Awards: Obie and Theater World awards for Zooman and the Sign, 1981; Obie award for Distant Fires, 1993.
opposite star Shirley Jones. Though he would later question the racial politics of the production, at the time young Giancarlo was thrilled: “I had a solo and everything.” Soon Esposito was cast in The Me Nobody Knows, based on the writings of ghetto children, and, in Esposito’s words, “a really sad show.” He also performed in Lost in the Stars, a musical version of the South Africa-based drama Cry the Beloved Country. At the age of 11 he shared the stage with acting legend Burt Lancaster in The American Christmas.
Growing up in New York City, meanwhile, Esposito experienced feelings of exclusion from both the black and Italian American communities in his neighborhood. His color distanced him from the Italian kids, who, in addition to their racial prejudice, resented his flowing Neapolitan name and his partial command of their ancestors’ language. Yet it was precisely his European background and name—and his lack of basketball skills—that put off his black peers. As a result, he told Epstein, “My best friends were Jewish. In that school, they were outcasts too, so that worked out okay.” While he never wanted to deny either part of his heritage, Esposito soon found that his skin color would make him the object of frequent abuse and discrimination.
By his early twenties, Esposito had appeared in five Broadway musicals, but he had had little experience in “legitimate” dramatic theater. A turning point came with the Negro Ensemble Company’s 1980 production of the Charles Fuller play Zooman and the Sign. “I was pretty shocked when I saw the script,” he told the New York Times. “This role is a total opposite of anything in my own life.” Portraying a “switchblade-wielding creature who exults in violence,” as the Times described him, Esposito won critical raves and, in 1981, Obie and Theater World awards for his performance.
“In the beginning I was frightened about doing Zooman, because I didn’t know if I could survive on stage without singing and dancing and being a showman, which I am,” Esposito noted in the New York Times. “But I’m not frightened anymore. I’ve risen to the occasion and am very confident about my future as a dramatic actor.” Soon revered producer Harold Prince cast him in another Broadway musical, Stephen Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along.
During the 1980s Esposito appeared on television shows like Miami Vice, The Equalizer, and Spencer: For Hire, often playing the role of drug dealer, killer, pimp, or some other kind of thug. His film work, which included Taps and The Cotton Club, offered a little more variety. “Money was always tight,” he told Midtown Resident’s Lisa Bornstein. “I never seemed to make enough.” He even waited tables on the Upper West Side of Manhattan to supplement his acting income. “I thought I would never be back in a restaurant. People were coming in, what are you doing here? That’s not that long ago.”
In the late 1980s Esposito became a regular in the films of writer-director Spike Lee, who cast him as fraternity member extraordinaire Big Brother All Mighty in School Daze and as Buggin’ Out in Do the Right Thing. The latter performance—full of righteous black anger and some comical doubletalk—made Esposito familiar to a large number of viewers, who often expected him to have the same attitude in real life. Even more troubling was an encounter with two teenage drug dealers who idolized the dealer he had played on Miami Vice; the pair could not understand either the fundamentally make-believe nature of Vice’s pusher or the actor’s moral disgust at the character. “I realized that I was a role model for them,” he told Epstein in the Progressive.
This stark realization motivated some deep reflection on his part. “I started thinking that I have a responsibility to young people in America not to do this all the time. Not only because my name will become synonymous with those characters, but also because they will be looked up to if I play them well.” As a result, Esposito began turning down what he considered shallow criminal parts. “Other black actors tell me I’m crazy,” he confessed. “They say, ‘If you don’t do it, I will.’ They don’t think that kind of consciousness belongs in show business.” For his part, however, he felt at peace with this decision, despite the financial and professional risks.
Esposito soon had a lot more free time on his hands. A colleague recommended lecturing as a way of getting involved in changing attitudes about race while working in front of an audience. Esposito began touring the college circuit, addressing sometimes all-black and sometimes ethnically mixed crowds. Epstein described one such appearance, at the University of Louisville in Kentucky, as “part confession, part sermon, part stump speech, part pop psychology, part stand-up comedy.” The actor noted that he was often met by extreme militancy from black students and had to explain that “I regard myself as a human being, as a person. I don’t look at everything from a black standpoint. But when I walk out into the world and I’m discriminated against, I immediately understand that I’m a black man.”
Esposito continued working for Lee, playing a jazz pianist in Mo’ Better Blues and one of the assassins of Malcolm X. In addition, he landed prominent roles in two other 1992 productions, Jim Jarmusch’s comedy Night on Earth and Tim Robbins’s political “mockumentary” Bob Roberts, in which he portrayed an investigative journalist. Guy Nicolucci of Us called Esposito’s performance in the latter “moving, honest, and perfectly seamless.” Bob Roberts intensified Esposito’s interest in politics, and he soon got involved in Arkansas governor Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign. After Clinton’s victory, he asserted to Bornstein, “The one thing that’s important about putting him in office is holding his foot to the fire,” in other words, pressuring him continually to advance an agenda of change and tolerance.
In 1993, Esposito was cast as Sergeant Paul Gigante on the short-lived Fox comedy series Bakersfield P.D. Like Esposito himself, Gigante was part black and part Italian. “I don’t think we’ve seen a guy with this kind of mixed ethnic background on TV before,” the actor asserted to Suelain Moy of Entertainment Weekly. He also elected to play another drug dealer—albeit one with greater depth than past roles offered—in the 1994 film Fresh. As the Latin druglord Esteban—who he noted in Venice, “was contemporary, but had old-world values”—he turned in a performance that exhibited “intelligence and care,” in the words of New York Times reviewer Janet Maslin. Daily Variety called him “particularly riveting.”
Esposito also worked with actor Harvey Keitel in Wayne Wang’s film Smoke; the interaction between cast members was reportedly so successful that Wang enlisted them in a side project, a short film with no cuts and no written dialogue. One scene, in fact, required Esposito and Keitel to communicate without speaking at all. In the midst of all his early 1990s film and television work, Esposito nevertheless did not abandon the stage.
In 1993 Esposito appeared off-Broadway in The Root. Once again, he played a drug dealer and petty criminal, but he accepted the role because of the dimension of the character and the seriousness of the play’s intent. To Bornstein, Esposito described his character, Willie, as someone “who I would like to think well of.” Once again, he had followed his heart, choosing a play in a 150-seat house because of the challenge presented by the material rather than the career advancement or money involved. For his work in Distant Fires at the Atlantic Theater Company, he won a second Obie Award and a Drama Desk nomination.
The next year Esposito made a special appearance in a made-for-television film project entitled Stolen Moments: Red, Hot + Cool. The program contains interviews, live musical performances, and discourse directed toward His-panics and blacks susceptible to or already infected by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and its fatal progression, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The documentary features candid talk on various types of intolerance and prejudice including racism, homophobia, and misogyny, or hatred of women as well as discussing what Vernon Reid described in a special advertising section of Vibe as “the aggressively neglectful policies” of the U.S. government towards the HIV/AIDS community. Esposito was one of many celebrities to lend a hand with Stolen Moments and the goal of raising money for AIDS prevention and research as well as raising consciousness about a social issue often ignored.
Esposito lives in New York City. He moved to the United States, “because, culturally, I think it’s really on fire,” he told Venice. “I have to be in a place where people do walk, and in neighborhoods that are slightly dangerous.”
Daily Variety, February 2, 1994, pp. 4, 18.
Entertainment Weekly, September 17, 1993, p. 36.
Midtown Resident, March 19, 1993, p. 13.
New York Times, December 26, 1980; April 1, 1994.
Progressive, December 1990, pp. 34-7.
Us, January 1993, p. 60.
Venice, August 1994, pp. 19-21.
Vibe, November 1994, pp. 119-22.
Esposito, Giancarlo 1958–
Esposito, Giancarlo 1958–
Full name, Giancarlo Giuseppi Alessandro Esposito; born April 26, 1958, in Copenhagen, Denmark; raised in New York, NY; father, a stagehand and carpenter; mother, an opera and nightclub singer; married Joy McManigal (a producer), June 1995; children: Shayne Lyra, Kate Lyn. Education: Elizabeth Seton College, A.A. (radio and television communication); attended Professional Children's School, New York City. Avocational Interests: Running, jazz, baseball.
Addresses: Agent—Agency for the Performing Arts, 9200 Sunset Blvd., Suite 900, Los Angeles, CA 90069. Manager—Untitled Entertainment, 331 North Maple Dr., Third Floor, Beverly Hills, CA 90210.
Career: Actor. Member of the Atlantic Theater Ensemble; appeared in "Hip-Hop Literacy," a radio public service announcement, Lyrical Knockout Entertainment. Lecturer on racism at colleges and universities. Also a playwright, political campaign worker, and waiter.
Member: Screen Actors Guild.
Awards, Honors: Obie Award, best performance, and Theatre World Award, both 1981, for Zooman and the Sign; Drama Desk Award (with others), outstanding ensemble performance, 1985, for Balm in Gilead; Obie Award, best performance, and Drama Desk Award nomination, both 1993, for Distant Fires; National Board of Review Award (with others), best acting by an ensemble, 1995, for The Usual Suspects; Independent Spirit Award nomination, best supporting male, 1995, Independent Features Project/West, for Fresh; Image Award nomination, outstanding supporting actor in a drama series, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, 1999, for Homicide: Life on the Street.
Voice, Et salammbo? (short film), 1970.
Puerto Rican teenager, Running (also known as Le vainqueur), Universal, 1979.
J. C. Pierce, Taps (also known as The Siege at Bunker Hill: T.A.P.S.), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1981.
Julio, Enormous Changes at the Last Minute (also known as Enormous Changes and Trumps), TeleCulture Films/ABC Circle Films, 1983.
Second cellmate, Trading Places, Paramount, 1983.
Bumpy Rhodes's hood, The Cotton Club, Orion, 1984.
Elisha, Go Tell It on the Mountain, New Line Cinema/Learning in Focus, 1984.
Street vendor, Desperately Seeking Susan, Orion, 1985.
Video player, Maximum Overdrive, De Laurentiis Entertainment Group, 1986.
First gang member, Heartbeat, 1987.
Howie, Sweet Lorraine, Angelika Films, 1987.
Julian "Big Brother Almighty" Eaves, School Daze, Columbia, 1988.
Buggin' Out, Do the Right Thing, Universal, 1989.
Lance, King of New York, New Line Cinema, 1990.
Left Hand Lacey, Mo' Better Blues, Universal, 1990.
Jimmy Jiles, Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1991.
YoYo, "New York," Night on Earth (also known as LANewYorkParisRomeHelsinki and Une nuit sur terre), Fine Line Features, 1991.
Bugs Raglin, Bob Roberts, Paramount/Miramax, 1992.
Thomas Hayer, Malcolm X (also known as X), Warner Bros., 1992.
Reverend Fenton Brunch, Amos and Andrew, New Line Cinema, 1993.
Esteban, Fresh, Miramax, 1994.
Jack, Benders, 1994.
Peace and Quiet, 1994.
Fast Tim Timko (game show host), Reckless, Samuel Goldwyn, 1995.
Jack Baer, The Usual Suspects (also known as Die Ublichen Verdachtigen), Gramercy Pictures, 1995.
Paul Lamont, The Keeper, Rada Film/Kino International, 1995.
Stoney, Kla$h (also known as Klash), 1995.
(Uncredited) Tarik's father, Waiting to Exhale, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1995.
Tommy, Smoke (also known as Smoke—Raucher unter sich), Miramax, 1995.
Tommy Finelli, Blue in the Face (also known as Brooklyn Boogie), Miramax, 1995.
Himself, Dans les coulisses du clip "California" (short film), 1996.
Rich man and pimp, California (short film), Polydor/Toutankhamoun, 1996.
Second stylist, Loose Women, Inmotion Entertainment, 1996.
Anthony Rivera, The People, Paramount, 1997.
Charlie Dunt, Nothing to Lose, Buena Vista, 1997.
Darryl, Trouble on the Corner, Vision Films, 1997.
Henry Kunitz, The Maze, Alpine Releasing, 1997.
(Scenes deleted; uncredited) Black, Lulu on the Bridge, Trimark Pictures, 1998.
Blind man, Where's Marlowe?, 1998, originally a pilot for ABC, 1996.
Reuben Escobar, Twilight, Paramount, 1998.
Georgie, Big City Blues, Avalanche Home Entertainment, 1999.
Hypnos, Monkeybone (live action and animated), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1999.
Spike, Josephine, Amberlon Pictures/Senator Film, 2000.
Cadillac Tramps, 2000.
Cassius Clay, Sr., Ali, Columbia, 2001.
Miguel Algarin, Pinero, Miramax, 2001.
Karl, Ash Tuesday, Rockville Pictures, 2003.
J. C. Reynolds, Blind Horizon, Lions Gate Films, c. 2004.
Captain Pierce, Doing Hard Time, Grass Roots Entertainment, 2004.
Hank, Noise (also known as The Dark Descends), Rockville Pictures, 2004.
Vargas, A Killer Within, 2004.
Benson Cooper (Reggie's dad), Back in the Day, DEJ Productions, 2005.
Detective Church, Derailed, The Weinstein Company, 2005.
Detective Esposito, Hate Crime, Pasidg Productions, 2005.
Director, I Will Avenge You, Iago!, Iago Films, 2005.
Little Jeff, Carlito's Way: Rise to Power (also known as Carlito's Way: The Beginning), Universal, 2005.
Officer Hernandez, Sherrybaby, Big Beach Films/Elevation Filmworks, 2005.
Ken Arnold, Rain, Big Headz Entertainment/Lexi Dog Media, 2006.
Senator Dillings, Last Holiday, Paramount, 2006.
Some sources cite appearances in other films, including Little Italy.
Coproducer, The Keeper, Rada Film/Kino International, 1995.
Television Appearances; Series:
Clay Tynan, Guiding Light, CBS, 1982–83.
Detective Paul Gigante, Bakersfield P.D. (also known as Bakersfield and Buddy Blues), Fox, 1993–94.
FBI agent Mike Giardello, Homicide: Life on the Street (also known as Homicide and H: LOTS), NBC, 1998–99.
Tom Divack, The $treet (also known as The Street), Fox, 2000–2001.
Nicholas Hahn, girls club, Fox, 2002.
Robert Fuentes, South Beach, UPN, 2006–.
Television Appearances; Miniseries:
Fernandes, "Roanoak," American Playhouse, PBS, 1986.
Thomas Peniston/werewolf, Peter Benchley's "Creature" (also known as Creature), ABC, 1998.
Tim Sanders, 5ive Days to Midnight (also known as 5 Days to Midnight), Sci-Fi Channel, 2004.
(In archive footage) Retrosexual: The 80s (documentary), VH1, 2004.
Television Appearances; Movies:
Jamie, The Gentleman Bandit (also known as The Bandit Priest), CBS, 1981.
Intruder, Finnegan Begin Again, HBO, 1985.
Marcus, Rockabye, CBS, 1986.
Joseph Grange, Five Desperate Hours, NBC, 1997.
Chaz Villanueva, Naked City: Justice with a Bullet, Showtime, 1998.
Dr. Lawrence Carver, Thirst, NBC, 1998.
Louie, Phoenix (also known as Arizona), HBO, 1998.
Mr. Peavey, Stardust, HBO, c. 2000.
Officer Mike Giardello, Homicide: The Movie (also known as Homicide: Life Everlasting), NBC, 2000.
Dr. Pena, Chupacabra: Dark Seas, Sci-Fi Channel, 2005.
Young, Xenophobia, 2006.
Television Appearances; Specials:
Kyle, "The Exchange Student," CBS Schoolbreak Special, CBS, 1985.
Himself, Making "Do the Right Thing" (documentary), 1989.
Dr. Kenneth Clark, "Simple Justice," The American Experience, PBS, 1993.
Narrator, Seven Songs for Malcolm X (documentary), Channel 4 (England), 1993.
Himself, Stolen Moments: Red, Hot + Cool (documentary; also known as Red Hot + Cool and Stolen Moments), 1994.
The Kennedy Center Presents: Speak Truth to Power (documentary; also known as Speak Truth to Power), PBS, 2000.
Himself, The Making of "Ali" (documentary), 2001.
Television Appearances; Awards Presentations:
Presenter, The Ninth Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards, syndicated, 1994.
Performer, The 34th NAACP Image Awards, Fox, 2003.
Television Appearances; Episodic:
Luther, "Little Prince," Miami Vice, NBC, 1984.
Adonis Jackson, "The Dutch Oven," Miami Vice, NBC, 1985.
"Nobody Lives Forever," Miami Vice, NBC, 1985.
Jumpin' Jack, "The Line," The Equalizer, CBS, 1986.
Ramos, "On the Night He Was Betrayed," Spenser: For Hire, ABC, 1987.
Tyson, "Blind Trust," Leg Work, CBS, 1987.
Paris Minton, "Fearless," Fallen Angels (also known as Perfect Crimes), Showtime, 1994.
Adolfo Guzman, "Brotherhood," New York Undercover (also known as Uptown Undercover), Fox, 1995.
Adolfo Guzman, "Buster and Claudia," New York Undercover (also known as Uptown Undercover), Fox, 1995.
Adolfo Guzman, "Digital Underground," New York Undercover (also known as Uptown Undercover), Fox, 1995.
Ferdinand Hollie, "Hollie and the Blowfish," NYPD Blue, ABC, 1995.
Andrew Coffin, "Out on a Limb," Swift Justice, UPN, 1996.
Andrew Coffin, "Sex, Death and Rock 'n' Roll," Swift Justice, UPN, 1996.
Cherchez La Femme, "Right to Life," Chicago Hope, CBS, 1996.
Jackson Turner (some sources cite Jackson Manning), "Kiss of the Spider Man," Living Single (also known as My Girls), Fox, 1996.
Mr. Baylor, "Aftershock," Law & Order, NBC, 1996.
Mr. Baylor, "Good Girl," Law & Order, NBC, 1996.
Whip Tyrell, "Aloha Nash," Nash Bridges (also known as Bridges), CBS, 1996.
Jamal, "Speak for Yourself, Bruce Clayton," NYPD Blue, ABC, 1998.
Vampire, "Fly-by-Night," The Hunger, Showtime, 1998.
Arnold and Gordon Keller, "Curveball," Nash Bridges (also known as Bridges), CBS, 1999.
Antonio, "Here I Am," Touched by an Angel, CBS, 2000.
Himself, "Ali," HBO First Look, HBO, 2001.
Jacob Lenz, "Andromeda and the Monster," 100 Centre Street (also known as 101 Centre Street), Arts and Entertainment, 2001.
James "Junior" Bell, "Mortality," Strong Medicine, Lifetime, 2001.
Ambassador Theodore Kelefy, "Immune to Murder," A Nero Wolfe Mystery (also known as Nero Wolfe), Arts and Entertainment, 2002.
Father Moreno (some sources cite Father Romero), "The Unforgiven," Third Watch, NBC, 2002.
Ray McMurphy, "Pro Se," The Practice, ABC, 2002.
Dr. Pembroke, "Wish You Were Here," The Division (also known as Heart of the City), Lifetime, 2003.
Jesse Haslem, "Brothers," Street Time, Showtime, 2003.
Lord Marion, "The Method," Lucky, FX Channel, 2003.
Darryl Washington, "The Big Employee Benefits Episode," Half & Half, UPN, 2004.
Jules, "Don't Think This Hasn't Been Fabulous," Soul Food, Showtime, 2004.
Jules, "Fear Eats the Soul," Soul Food, Showtime, 2004.
Rodney Fallon, "The Brotherhood," Law & Order, NBC, 2004.
Rodney Fallon, "Vendetta," Law & Order, NBC, 2004.
Orlando Ramirez, "Boys Will Be Boys," Law & Order: Trial by Jury, NBC, 2005.
Television Appearances; Pilots:
Arthur Sistrunk, Relentless: Mind of a Killer (also known as Mood Indigo), NBC, 1993.
Detective Paul Gigante, Bakersfield P.D. (also known as Bakersfield and Buddy Blues), Fox, 1993.
Jonathan Driscoll, The Tomorrow Man, CBS, 1995.
Andrew Coffin, Swift Justice, UPN, 1996.
Carlos Rivera, I.A., NBC, 1996.
Blind man, Where's Marlowe?, ABC, 1996, expanded version released as a feature film, 1998.
Tom Divack, The $treet (also known as The Street), Fox, 2000.
Nicholas Hahn, girls club, Fox, 2002.
Lieutenant Gardner, NYPD 2069, Fox, 2004.
Robert Fuentes, South Beach, UPN, 2006.
Andrew, Maggie Flynn (musical), American National Theatre and Academy (ANTA) Theatre, New York City, beginning c. 1966.
The American Christmas, c. 1969.
Understudy, The Me Nobody Knows (musical), Helen Hayes Theatre, New York City, 1970–71.
Alex, Lost in the Stars (musical), Imperial Theatre, New York City, 1972.
Via Galactica (musical), Uris Theatre, New York City, 1972.
Julio Gonzales, Seesaw (musical), Uris Theatre, 1973.
Zeke, Miss Moffat, Shubert Theatre, Philadelphia, PA, 1974, produced in New York City, c. 1977.
A Gala Tribute to Joshua Logan, Imperial Theatre, 1975.
Zooman, Zooman and the Sign, Negro Ensemble Company, Theatre Four, New York City, 1980–81.
Valedictorian, Merrily We Roll Along (musical), Alvin Theatre, New York City, 1981.
Ken Benson, Who Loves the Dancer, Henry Street Settlement, Louis Abrons Arts for Living Center, New Federal Theatre, New York City, 1982.
Skippy, Keyboard, Henry Street Settlement, Louis Abrons Arts for Living Center, New Federal Theatre, 1982.
Javier, The House of Ramon Iglesias, Ensemble Studio Theatre, New York City, 1983.
Do Lord Remember Me, American Place Theatre, New York City, 1984.
Ernesto, Balm in Gilead, Circle Repertory Theatre, New York City, 1984, then Minetta Lane Theatre, New York City, 1984–85.
Union Boys, Yale Repertory Theatre, New Haven, CT, 1985–86.
Jack/Silk, Don't Get God Started (musical), Longacre Theatre, New York City, 1987–88.
Ignatius, Anchorman, Theatre Four, 1988.
One for Dexter (concert), Avery Fisher Hall, New York City, 1991.
Foos, Distant Fires, Atlantic Theater Company, New York City, 1991, then Circle in the Square Downtown, New York City, 1992.
Willie, The Root, Atlantic Theater, 1993.
Papo, Trafficking in Broken Hearts, Atlantic Theater Company, 1994–95.
Ramon, Sacrilege, Belasco Theatre, New York City, 1995.
Threepenny Opera (opera and musical theatre piece), New York City Center, New York City, beginning c. 1995.
Appeared in other productions.
Daniel Coyle, Hardball: A Season in the Projects, HarperAudio, 1994.
Stewart O'Nan, Everyday People, HarperAudio, 2001.
Author of plays.
Contemporary Black Biography, Volume 9, Gale, 1995.