Participating in the 2017 SoCal Women Business Expo and Conference is Award-winning actress/writer/comedienne Maria Costa.
Maria Costa’s groundbreaking and dynamic humor has critics calling her the “Latina Lucille Ball”. Her chameleon-like virtuosity has her being compared to the likes of Tracey Ullman and Gilda Radner. Costa is best known for her Imagen Award-nominated, Viva America, and her award-winning, Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them, distributed worldwide by Image Entertainment.
Costa is also the recipient of the Maverick Award from the Los Angeles Women in Theater and is set to receive a star on the Motown Walk to Fame alongside other honorees, including singer Aretha Franklin and producer Jerry Bruckheimer. Costa’s TV credits include: Ugly Betty(ABC), Universal Remote (Showtime), Strong Medicine (Lifetime) and Joan of Arcadia(CBS). Costa was also a series regular on The It Factor (Bravo) and Dangerous Minds(ABC).
Maria Costa is a groundbreaking and dynamic actress, comedian, and writer whose unique brand of “funny, brilliant, and sexy” humor is making her an influential voice of social relevance on tours, on television, and in film. Maria’s roster of hilarious and original characters has critics calling her “the women of a thousand faces.” Her award-winning one-woman stand up performance, Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them, has sold out prestigious venues like the Kodak Theater, toured throughout 16 cities and 6 countries, and is now setting college campuses on fire, having toured over 80 campuses nationwide. The DVD of ‘Macho Men’ comedy concert, filmed live at the Kodak Theater, is distributed worldwide by Image Entertainment and is available on Amazon, BestBuy.com, and other vendors. Maria has won an Imagen Award for Film: Best Theatrical Production for the Concert Film and a Maverick Award from the Los Angeles Women in Theater.
Maria is set to receive a star on the Motown Walk to Fame alongside other honorees, including singer Aretha Franklin and producer Jerry Bruckheimer. Maria recently co-hosted the Urban Wheel Awards alongside fellow actor, Morris Chestnut and her new comedy pilot, Viva America, is an Imagen Award nominee for Excellence in Latino Film and TV – along with ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and NBC’s The Voice. The Kresge Foundation awarded Costa with a prestigious performing artist fellowship to improve Detroit through content that speaks to the Latino community.
Costa’s Cuban fire has also spread to television. Maria has a long list of primetime television shows under her belt. Milestone achievements include her popular role as Valerie on ABC’s Ugly Betty, her role in Universal Remote on Showtime, guest roles on Lifetime’s Strong Medicine and CBS’s Joan of Arcadia, and series regular roles in ABC’s Dangerous Minds and BRAVO’S The It Factor LA. Maria is an Alma Award-nominated actress in the category of Best Actress in a Dramatic Series and is the winner of a Nosotros Golden Eagle Award, a Screen Actors Guild Hispanic Heritage Honor for her work in media. Maria has also worked as a writer, producer, and on-air talent for national programming on the PBS network.
Maria began her career as a classically trained actress who starred in productions written by renowned playwright, Ron Milner. She has also starred in a number of theatrical productions, including Anthony and Cleopatra and For Colored Girls Who Have Committed Suicide at the Hillberry Theater and Latinologes at the South Coast Repertory Theatre. Maria’s early works also included creating, producing, writing, and performing in her original sketch comedy troupe, No-Spic Inglish, which she regularly performed at the Ice House and the Improv in Los Angeles. Her previous one-person show, AfroSpic, is one of many of her original plays.
Maria Costa is a strong advocate for empowering minority children through the arts and contributes to them through her program, La Bella.