Marissa Ghavami is an actor, singer, voice over artist, model and advocate. Her work in the entertainment industry spans theatre, film, television, commercial, radio and print. As an advocate, she founded the nonprofit Healing TREE (Trauma Resources, Education & Empowerment) and is a public speaker, nationally.
Growing up in Louisville, Kentucky, Marissa's passion for performing was evident at an early age and she began working locally. She honed her craft in Kentuckiana's prominent artistic training ground, starring in dozens of theatrical productions at regional theatres and training at the nationally celebrated pre-college conservatory, Walden Theatre. She enjoyed work as a commercial and print model, voice over artist and singer as well and also lent her gifts to distinguished charity functions.
Her talent brought her national attention when she won the opportunity to sing at the legendary Apollo Theatre in New York City on NBC's It's Showtime at the Apollo and was named their "Star of Tomorrow." It was there that she was discovered by the show's producer, living legend Suzanne De Passe (Motown, The Jackson 5). She then went on to act on CBS's Without a Trace and in David Chase's (Emmy-winning creator of the hit HBO show The Sopranos) theatrically released feature film Not Fade Away, starring James Gandolfini, et. al. She was seen on stage in New York originating the leading role of Kate in the World Premiere of The White Oak of Johnston. She has also had leading roles in the short films Prophet and Mirror. She has sung at New York City hot spot 54 Below and was the runner up in the LA's Next Great Stage Star Competition. She has done voice over work for such widely known brands as McDonald's, Ford and JCPenney. Additionally, she has done commercial and print work for PepsiCo’s AMP Energy Drink, Kroger, Vartali Hair Salon in New York City, Girl Scout Cookies and Kentucky Fried Chicken.
Recently, Marissa was cast as a lead, and the title character, in the feature film What Will Lucy Do Next?, a lead, Caroline, in the play They Told Me To Use It, (with a staged reading at the Broadway Bound Theatre Festival on August 21st, 2018), a series regular, Gina, in the pilot Fashionables, and a guest star on The Rigano Songbook's musical web series Broadway On Deck, hosted by All Things Broadway. Additionally, she made her Joe's Pub at The Public Theater debut in the Songs By Us concert, worked on the developmental workshop for Jet of Blood and modeled for B1 Fashion & Art Magazine and Belvedere and will be seen as a print model in New York based Fashion Designer's Claudia Amaya's upcoming Fall Line.
In 2012 she completed a two-year actor training program at The William Esper Studio, the world’s foremost studio dedicated to Meisner-based actor training, and has studied singing with the renowned Seth Riggs and, currently, Liz Caplan.
Marissa is passionate about merging the arts and advocacy, seeing the arts as both a healing tool and a platform for positive change. To read more about the story behind Marissa's passion for advocacy, click here. In addition to founding the nonprofit Healing TREE and being a national public speaker, she is a creator behind arts and advocacy projects and a published writer. She is a 2015/2016 ASTEP (Artists Striving To End Poverty) Fellow and participant in the 2015 Artist As Citizen Conference at Juilliard. She is the winner of the "Way To Go Woman Award" for Today's Woman magazine, featured in the September 2016 issue. Additionally, she is featured in Nancy Miller's book, One Hundred Fascinating Louisville Women, and was given a mayoral proclamation of "Marissa Ghavami Day" in her hometown. Marissa has two Bengal mix cat rescues, Sebastian and Viola, and is based in New York City.
Weight: 110 lbs Eyes: Blue
Height: 5'5” Hair: Brown
Vocal Range: F sharp below middle C to E flat above high C. Great with Dialects/ Knows International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). Beginner Ballet, Jazz, Hip-Hop and Tap. Beginner Acoustic Guitar. Licensed Driver. Current Passport.
TRAINING (highlights, see Resume for more)
The William Esper Studio Acting (w/ William Esper), Voice & Speech (w/ Nancy Mayans), Movement (w/ Ted Morin)
Liz Caplan Vocal Studios Singing (w/ Liz Caplan)
Los Angeles, CA
San Francisco, CA
New York, NY