Description: Producer Chris Pina likes to describe Rick Overton & Friends as, 'Indie comedy, a much desired alternative to the usual comedy club scene out there. It's a fearless, innovative, gut-splittingly funny, thinking-person's event that brings together daring, smart comedy and cool music. All the components (the cast) conjure an inventive, bold mosaic of truth-telling through their senses of humor and humanity. The artists of Rick Overton & Friends would just like to entertain, enlighten and make your brain balls more rounded
Hal Sparks: Currently starring in the Disney XD show, LAB RATS, actor/comedian Hal Sparks began his professional career as a teenager in Chicago. As a member of the famed Second City Troupe, his quick wit and affable personality quickly gained him recognition and acclaim and he was named the “Funniest Teenager In Chicago” by the Chicago Sun Times. Sparks went on to host the Emmy Award- winning “Talk Soup” on E! Entertainment Television, winning rave reviews from fans and critics alike. He starred for five seasons on Showtime’s hit series “Queer As Folk” and appeared in the films “Extract,” “Spiderman 2” and “Dude, Where’s My Car?” Sparks recently starred in his own onehour Showtime comedy special, “Charmageddon,” which is now a best-selling DVD. He is a star commentator on VH1's popular “I Love the 80’s” series and can be hear every Wednesday on the nationally syndicated “Stephanie Miller Radio Show.” Hal is also a pop culture expert and regularly appears on such shows as "Joy Behar" and CNN's "Your Money." His numerous other television appearances include “The Tonight Show,” “Larry King Live,” “Charlie Rose,” “Good Morning America,” “The View,” “Jimmy Kimmel” and MTV. In addition to a busy acting and stand-up career, he is an accomplished musician. Hal and his band, Zero 1, recently released their debut album.
Rick Overton: Rick Overton has been doing standup comedy since before there were lockable steering columns on cars. Seriously. Rick believes that Comedy shares it's roots with Country Western and The Blues because they're all just complaining to a rhythm.
When not doing standup comedy, Rick can be seen on local dog park paths getting to visit all the dogs he wants without having to actually own or pay for any of them. Win-win.
Rick can currently be seen in Stephen Soderberg's THE INFORMANT starring Matt Damon. He's also Pam's Dad on THE OFFICE in the Wedding Episodes. Yay for On Demand! Someone got something right somewhere. And he has a recuring role on TNT's LEVERAGE as an FBI agent, along with Gerry Downey.
Kira Soltanovich: A graduate of the San Diego State University Dramatic Arts Department and with training from the American Conservatory Theatre and The Groundlings, Ms. Soltanovich is extensively trained in every aspect of writing as well. "I loved living in the dorms at college because my father never let me have slumber parties as a kid. He said sleeping on the floor and eating from cardboard boxes was the reason we left Russia."
Recently, Kira optioned a 1/2-hour hybrid comedy with New Line Television starring Scott Baio. Based on her writing and acting, she was selected to be a part of the ABC Comedy Development Showcase where she was named "Hottest new writer". She has shot several pilots this year, including a Pilot Presentation for Comedy Central. You might also hear Kira as the voice of "Carla", a teenage know-it-all, on the animated series, Iggy Cool.
Kira has been a winner, finalist and semi-finalist in a myriad of comedy competitions and festivals, including Comedy Central's Laugh Riots, California’s Funniest Female, Seattle International Comedy Festival, and the Boston Comedy Festival.
Chris Bonno: Chris is a talented actor, artist, comedian and musician. Once voted the Funniest Person in Austin, he's been a regular performer at the Improv in LA, with the improv troupe "The Fugitives", and is an original cast member of Fake Radio - since 2001 - performing characters ranging from Bob Hope to Clarence the Angel in “It’s a Wonderful Life". He currently tours nationwide with comedian and actor Hal Sparks. He regularly performs with another group of comedians including Rick Overton, Rick Shapiro, Dylan Brody and comic storyteller Kelly Carlin. His TV credits include "Just Shoot Me!" , "Rock Me, Baby" , "The Drew Carey Show" , "Mad About You" and Oxygen's Movie of the Week, Nadine in Date Land , playing a detective opposite Janeane Garofalo. Bonno also filmed guest star roles on both Comedy Central series "Halfway Home" and played opposite Michael Rapaport on Fox's "The War at Home". You can find Chris on the web playing the character Ralph the Roadie, a roadie who wants to be a rock star, a web comedy series. He is currently working on the screenplay for the feature of it, with comedian and writer Matt Weinhold. He also, sings, plays the bass in a recently formed band, and is an excellent fine artist/painter with shows popping up sporadically throughout the year in and around Los Angeles. But really, truly, his first love is Fake Radio...!
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London born Matt Kirshen's precision wit has earned him an impressive reputation on the international comedy circuit. Most recently he appearances on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Paul Provenza’s Green Room, and as a finalist on NBC's Last Comic Standing have earned him a whole new host of fans in the United States and a surprising number of other countries worldwide.
He has also recorded a half-hour special for the World Stands Up, Comedy Central, and has acclaimed festival appearances at Montreal, Edinburgh, Kilkenny, Glastonbury, Reading, Leeds, Bermuda, and Amsterdam.
His debut CD, "I Guess We'll Never Know" was named in Punchline Magazine's top 10 albums of 2009 and his hit appearance at the 2008 Just For Laughs festival in Montreal resulted in no fewer than 4 of his gags appearing in the Montreal Gazette's round up of their best jokes of the fest.
Matt has appeared in and written for numerous television shows in the UK, including a charity gala featuring Jimmy Fallon, which resulted in Jimmy himself requesting Matt to open for him in a college tour to promote his Late Night hosting slot.
His youthful looks disguise a veteran comic with almost a decade of experience, and a wealth of smart, funny and relatable material, making him a firm favorite with college audiences. While it's his prime-time NBC appearances that most American comedy fans will recognize him from, they are often surprised at the breadth and scope of his material, described by one reviewer as "intelligent, but with the emphasis firmly on the funny"
Brian Kiley: Brian Kiley has appeared several times on “The Late Show with David Letterman”, “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” and “Late Night with Conan O'Brien”. He appears regularly at Caroline's Comedy Club in NYC. He has been a staff writer for Late Night with Conan O'Brien since 1994 and he has been nominated for 12 Emmy Awards and he is the winner of the 2007 Emmy Award for Writing in a Comedy/Variety Series. Other shows that Brian has appeared on include “Comedy Central Presents”, “Dr. Katz Professional Therapist”, “The CBS Morning Show”, “Spotlight Café”, “Caroline's Comedy Hour”, “Comedy On The Road”, and “An Evening at the Improv”.
Chris Pina: Chris Pina has been a stand-up, sketch artist and improvisor at the Hollywood Improv and many other comedy clubs for years. He's been the opening act for Jay Leno, Billy Crystal, Sam Kinison, Rick Overton and many other comics. After graduating from Beverly Hills High School, Chris was immediately cast as a regular on the 22-episode, CBS - Andy Griffith series, "Headmaster". He went on to act in other television series such as Hill Street Blues, Beverly Hills 90210, Mad About You and many more. He co-starred with Annie Potts in the NBC pilot, "Hollywood High" and began writing jokes for Sam Kinison, Richard Jeni and other top comics around the same time. Chris co-produced, co-wrote and starred in six theatrical productions including the acclaimed, "The Cardigan Christmas Show" and "The National Void". Chris' voice can be heard in commercials and animated shows. He was the voice of Coca-Cola's Powerade ad campaign for two years and was the lead character voice of Mascot in Endemol's 2007 web series, "Mascots" (which he wrote and directed). For 6 years at the Hollywood Improv, Chris directed and performed with the hysterical improv group, The Fugitives every Friday and Saturday night. Since 2008, Chris has been a contributing monologue writer for "Late Night with David Letterman". In 2010, Chris joined three-time Emmy Award-winning writer, David Feldman, on his nationally syndicated Pacifica Broadcasting radio series, The David Feldman Show" where Chris provides voices and material for the comedy broadcast. He also produced talent for David's shows by bringing in Laraine Newman and cast regular Paul Dooley. Chris continues to contribute to the show and it's one of his favorite shows he's ever done because he works with comedy giants like Martin Short, Teri Garr, Robin Williams, Laraine Newman and Robert Smigal. In 2011 to present, Chris produces and hosts, "Mind The Gap", a thinking-person's comedy revue that combines stand-up, music and spoken word in a theatrical setting. Mind the Gap's core group includes Kelly Carlin (George's daughter), Rick Shapiro, Dylan Brody, Laraine Newman, Gary Shapiro, Chris Bonno and Rick Overton. Some of the Mind The Gap guests have included Eddie Pepitone, Laura Kightlinger, Dana Gould, Sarah Silverman, Jimmy Dore and other amazing comics. Chris is currently producing and hosting The Improv's "Rick Overton & Friends" show which includes the best of the best in live comedy and is the show to catch on Sunday nights.