Behzad Dabu

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Meet Behzad.

 

Behzad Dabu is an actor, producer, and activist based out of both Los Angeles and Chicago.  He grew up in Syracuse, NY and got his BFA in Acting from Columbia College Chicago, where he also worked after college as the Senior International Admissions Officer; traveling all over the world working with students and their families on creating careers in the arts.   

He has worked extensively on stage at some of the best theaters in the country, especially in Chicago, and is a proud company member at TimeLine Theatre Company  which presents stories inspired by history that connect with today’s social and political issues.

With a passion for working with playwrights and new play development, he originated the role of 'Amit' in "Samsara" at Victory Gardens Theatre, for which he was nominated for a Jeff Award - Best Actor. He also originated the role of 'Abe' in the Pulitzer Prize-winning and Tony-nominated play, "Disgraced" which he performed at American Theatre Company, Goodman Theatre, Berkeley Repertory, Seattle Repertory, and the Mark Taper Forum at Center Theatre Group.

On screen, you can see him as 'Simon Drake' on Seasons 3 and 4 of How To Get Away With Murder on ABC, and as 'Amir' on The Chi, a new series airing this fall on Showtime.  He also appeared in episodes of The Good Place, Chicago P.D., Drive Share, You're So Talented; and in the films King Rat, Imperfections, Older Children; as well as various national commercials. 

Behzad strives to be a strong advocate for social justice and equality, particularly in regards to representation in the arts and media; and is a founding member of The Chicago Inclusion Project, which seeks to level the playing field and provide resources in the arts for people of color, women, LGBTQ, and people with disabilities. He is a skilled audience engagement facilitator and experienced post-show discussion leader.  

Behzad is a proud member of AEA and SAG-AFTRA.

 
 

...it is up to the artist to not be silenced. To Call out...and to Call in. To resist... and to challenge. We must give voice to the disenfranchised, and be a visible example of resistance and positive representation. The Greeks believed that the only way to achieve true change... real catharsis... that the only way to have a real profound and deep impact on a life, is that you have to go through hell. They believed that you really have to live in the shit for a while, in order for true transformation to happen. But guess what? people don’t like going through the shit. We avoid it. So, what if an actor could do it for you? What if one could go to the theatre... or listen to the song... or read the novel... or watch the movie, where the artist can go through it for us, by proxy, so that we don’t have to. If so, we — the audience — can reap the benefit, learn the lesson, and have the change we desire, or the change we need without going through the shit ourselves. That is the value of the artist. It is a true service profession. It is easy to see how the Doctor, the Lawyer, the Construction Worker, the Architect, the Hedgefund Manager and the Teacher impact our lives and what role they play in society. We get to see it and experience it. It is tangible... but here is a question for you... what do all those people do AFTER work? They read books! They listen to music! They go to movies! They go to plays! That is culture. Culture is quite literally, what we live for. The Arts. and Artists? We create that culture. We are the culture creators. We have the ability to shape the society. We have the responsibility to do it in a meaningful and inclusive way. I take that very seriously. What we do is very valuable. It’s important work. Let’s keep creating...
— Behzad Dabu