*Washington, DC born and Maryland raised actor Gbenga Akinnagbe (Lottery Ticket, “The Wire,” “The Good Wife”) lands reoccurring role on Showtime’s “Nurse Jackie” as a temp who is bold enough to challenge the nurse’s bullying ways. His character was introduced May 2, 2011 and will be a regular until the season’s end, in June.

“It’s pretty exciting changing things up,” Gbenga said about joining the cast of the Showtime series. “He’s the only other nurse than Jackie.”

Akinnagbe complimented the writers and the good chemistry as the reason his one time character returns until the end of the season.

“My mom was a nurse,” Gbenga pointed out when asked about any experience he was able to bring into him character. “And I’ve done medical shows before.”

Akinnagbe decided on acting full time after the death of his father. He first took to the stage starring in “Romeo and Juliet,” “Cyrano de Bergerac,” “Hambone,” “All in the Timing,” and “Sophocles’ Trilogy of Oedipus.” Relocating to New York he landed a role in a small production called “The Wire” on HBO, which became a hit that today have more viewers than ever before .

Gbenga Akinnagbe’s talents earned him a role in The Taking of Pelham 123 with John Travolta and The Edge of Darkness with Mel Gibson. He has made guest appearances on “Law and Order: SVU,” “Cold Case,” “Numb3rs,”and “Conviction.”

“Nurse Jackie” is played by Edie Falco. Jackie Peyton is an ER nurse who has to skillfully navigate through a crumbling healthcare system, while doing whatever she can to provide her patients with the best care possible.

For more information on Showtime’s “Nurse Jackie” log onto www.sho.com and for more about Gbenga Akinnagbe follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bgengaakinnagbe.

Actress/Comedienne Carlease Burke appears in Disney’s Prom and UK’s hit series ‘Shameless’

* “Moving from New York to Los Angeles was when I said I am really going to do it,” said actress/comedienne Carlease Burke about the beginning of her over 25 year-old career as an actress. “(At the time) you could have as many agents as you needed. You didn’t have to sign exclusive. Here in Los Angeles you have to be exclusive.”

Her first agent asked her to read when they where also just beginning as well. They both joined forces and in no time Carlease had a role on “Young and the Restless.” She had theater experience too in “Romeo and Juliet,” which earned her an NAACP Image Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress, and in August Wilson’s “Gem of the Ocean.”

“I was starting out as well. I was just doing what people told me to do,” Burke chuckles.

Good for Carlease that she did. She went on to star in commercials for GEICO (A Bird in Hand); Pfizer, Macy’s, Verizon and Pizza Hut. Burke guest starred in “Hot in Cleveland,” “Raising Hope,” “Hawthorne,” “Flash Forward,” “Heroes,” “Southland,” “NCIS,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Bones,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Malcolm in the Middle,” “Without a Trace,” “Monk,” and “How I Met Your Mother.” The Pre-Law graduate also appeared in Hallmark’s “Sweet Nothing in My Ear.”

Carlease appears in In Her Shoes opposite Cameron Diaz; The Terminal with Tom Hanks; The Back-up Plan with Jennifer Lopez; guest stars in UK’s hit series “Shameless;” the Family film Hop and Disney Pictures’ Prom, which was recently released to theaters.

“As actors we give so much power over to agents to make our decision,” Carlease said when asked to give advice to up-and-coming actors. “But we need to work with the agent as a partnership.”

For more information on Carlease Burke log onto www.CarleaseBurke.com or follow her at www.twitter.com/CarleaseBurke.

Broadway’s Tony Award winning ‘Memphis,’ an epic experience on the big screen

*NCM Fathom and Broadway Worldwide presented a special four-day nationwide screening of the 2010 Tony Award winning Broadway musical “Memphis” (HD). The musical was almost epic on the big screen.

“Memphis,” the movie presentation, was captured during a live performance at Broadway’s renowned Shubert Theatre in New York City. The musical takes place in an underground club and local radio station where white DJ Huey Calhoun (played by Chad Kimball) takes “black” music mainstream. During his love affair with black music, Calhoun falls in love with a black singer Felicia (Montego Glover).

“Memphis” successfully takes you mentally back to the era where the original book took place. You were reminded of a time/mind-set mostly forgotten and of the music that shaped what we listen to today. The acting, songs (David Bryan), customs (Paul Tazewell), music (Christopher Jahnke) and the fabulous dance routines (Sergio Trujillo) are proof to me that the Tony Award was well earned.

The limited presentation was hosted specifically for those in attendance to experience the musical. What an experience that was, for me, it was truly a classic one.

For more information on “Memphis,” which continues to play to a sold out audiences, log onto www.MemphisTheMusical.com.