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Biography #2 (for My Big Fat Greek Wedding)

Nia Vardalos is the actress-writer, who has adapted her popular one-woman theatrical show for the screen, was born and raised in Winnipeg. A talented member of Chicago's famed Second City from 1990 through 1994, she took an unconventional path to the improvisational comedy troupe...through the box office. Although Vardalos wanted to be in the ensemble, she took a job in the box office for the Toronto company in the late 1980s. When a performer was rushed to the hospital with only ten minutes to curtain time, she went backstage and told the producers that she knew the show. With a sold-out audience out front, they took a chance. The next day, she was invited to join the talented troupe.

After two years with the Canadian company, she joined Second City in Chicago, where she performed for over six years. While working with the Chicago cast, Vardalos met and married fellow performer Ian Gomez (The Drew Carey Show, Felicity). Together, they ventured to Los Angeles to explore opportunities in film and television. Vardalos earned guest-starring roles in such episodic series as Common Law, 'The Drew Carey Show, Boy Meets World, and It's Like, You Know and was also seen in the features Men Seeking Women and Meet Prince Charming.". A talented writer, Vardalos jokes that she wrote her autobiographical one-woman show so that she could get a better agent. What began in development at HBO Workspace, a Los Angeles-based workshop for new material, consequently evolved into My Big Fat Greek Wedding, which was initially staged at the Hudson Theater and moved to the Globe Theatre for a four-month run. Currently, Vardalos is a recurring character on the critically acclaimed Curb Your Enthusiasm, a half-hour comedy for HBO from Seinfeld co-creator Larry David.

Bio courtesy IFC Films for "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" (12-Oct-2003)


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