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Uzo Aduba
Uzo Aduba 2014 (cropped).jpg
Aduba in 2014
Uzoamaka Nwanneka Aduba

(1981-02-10) February 10, 1981 (age 40)
EducationBoston University (BM)
Years active2003–present
Robert Sweeting
(m. 2020)

Uzoamaka Nwanneka Aduba[2] (/ˈzəˈdbə/; born February 10, 1981[3]) is an American actress. She is known for her role as Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren on the Netflix original series Orange Is the New Black (2013–2019), for which she won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series in 2014, an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2015, and two Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series in 2014 and 2015.[4] She is one of only two actors to win an Emmy Award in both the comedy and drama categories for the same role, the other being Ed Asner for the character Lou Grant.[5]

Uzo Aduba appeared in films including American Pastoral (2016), Showing Roots (2016), My Little Pony: The Movie (2017), Candy Jar (2018) and Miss Virginia (2019). In 2020, Aduba played Shirley Chisholm in the Hulu miniseries Mrs. America, for which she won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie and the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Movie/Miniseries.

Early life

Uzo Aduba was born in Boston, Massachusetts, to parents from Nigeria, and grew up in Medfield, Massachusetts.[6] She graduated from Medfield High School in 1999.[7] She attended Boston University, where she studied classical voice[8] and competed in track and field.[9][10] She has called her family a "sports family".[8] Her younger brother, Obi, played hockey at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and six seasons professionally.[11]


Early works

Aduba first garnered recognition for her acting in 2003, when her performance in Translations of Xhosa[12] at the Olney Theatre Center for the Arts earned her a Helen Hayes Award nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Play.[13] In 2006 she played Amphiarus at New York Theatre Workshop and again in 2008 at La Jolla Playhouse. In 2007, she made her Broadway debut, portraying Toby in Helen Edmundson's adaptation of Coram Boy at the Imperial Theatre.[14] In 2011–12, she sang "By My Side" as part of the original revival cast of Godspell at the Circle in the Square Theatre.[15][16] Her first television appearance was as a nurse on Blue Bloods in 2012.[8] Aduba also played the mother of the title character in Venice at The Public Theater in New York.[17][18]

2013–2019: Orange Is the New Black

Aduba at the premiere of American Pastoral at the 2016 Toronto Film Festival
Aduba at the premiere of American Pastoral at the 2016 Toronto Film Festival

In 2013, Aduba began portraying Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren in the Netflix comedy-drama series Orange Is the New Black.[19] On being cast, Aduba said:

I auditioned for the show back in late July or early August of [2012]. I had been auditioning that summer for more television and film [after doing much theater]. I'd read a lot of scripts and I remember reading Orange Is the New Black, and it was at the head of the pack. I remember thinking, 'Wow, that is really good, I would love to be a part of that.' I went in and auditioned for another part, and my representatives called me about a month later and they were like, "Hi, we have some really good news. You remember that audition you went on for Orange Is the New Black? You didn't get it." I go, "So… okay, what's the good news?" They said they wanted to offer me another part, Crazy Eyes. I was like, "What in my audition would make someone think I'd be right for a part called Crazy Eyes?" But to be honest, when I got the script for it, it felt like the right fit.[20]

Casting director Jennifer Euston explains the selection of Aduba for the role thus: "Uzo Aduba...had her hair in those knots for the audition...They saw something amazing in her and were able to connect it to what they were looking for in Crazy Eyes."[21] In joining the series, Aduba obtained her Screen Actors Guild card, of which she said, "I was just like, 'Wow, this means I'm a full actor now.' It was such a big deal, and I remember being so thankful and feeling so proud."[22]

Aduba has been recognized for her performance as "Crazy Eyes", winning Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series at the 66th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards and Best Guest Performer in a Comedy Series at the 4th Critics' Choice Television Awards. She was nominated for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film at the 18th Satellite Awards for her season one performance.[23][24][25] Aduba's season two performance earned her the Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series at the 21st Screen Actors Guild Awards and a nomination for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film at the 72nd Golden Globe Awards.[26][27][28]

Aduba won a second Primetime Emmy at the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards in 2015, winning the award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. This makes her the first actress to win both a drama and comedy Emmy for the same role.[29] Her performance in the third season also earned another Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series win for the 22nd Screen Actors Guild Awards.[30] Aduba also earned a Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film at the 73rd Golden Globe Awards.[31]

In March 2014, Aduba performed at Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS benefit concert Broadway Backwards.[32] She teamed with Rachel Bay Jones for a rendition of the song "Lily's Eyes" from the musical The Secret Garden.[33] In 2015, Aduba played Glinda the Good Witch in the NBC live musical event special The Wiz Live!, receiving positive reviews from critics.[34][35]

Aduba made her film debut in the 2015 musical comedy-drama film Pearly Gates.[36] The next year, she starred alongside Maggie Grace in the comedy-drama Showing Roots, and played supporting roles in Tallulah, Steven Universe, and American Pastoral directed by Ewan McGregor. Aduba played a major role in the 2017 musical animated film My Little Pony: The Movie, voicing Queen Novo, leader of the Hippogriffs/Seaponies. She co-starred in two Netflix films; Candy Jar in 2018, and Beats in 2019. Also in 2019, Aduba played the title role in the film Miss Virginia.[37][38]


After Orange Is the New Black ended, Aduba was cast as politician Shirley Chisholm in the Hulu miniseries Mrs. America, opposite Cate Blanchett and Sarah Paulson. Chisholm was the first black candidate for a major party's nomination for President of the United States, the first woman to run for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination, and the first woman to appear in a United States presidential debate.[39] The miniseries premiered on April 15, 2020, receiving critical acclaim, and Aduba won a Primetime Emmy Award.[40] She was cast to star opposite Lupita Nyong'o in the ultimately unproduced HBO Max miniseries Americanah written by Danai Gurira.[41] Aduba also was set to star in the fourth season of FX series Fargo, but dropped out due to "some personal family issues".[42][43] Aduba co-stars in the upcoming romantic drama film Really Love.[44] In October 2020, she was cast as therapist Dr. Brooke Taylor in fourth season of the HBO series In Treatment.[45]


In April 2017, Aduba received the Point Courage Award from the Point Foundation for her support of the LGBT community.[46]

In June 2018, Aduba became Heifer International's first-ever celebrity ambassador to Africa. She saw Heifer's impact firsthand on 2016 and 2018 field visits to Uganda.[47]

In July 2020, Aduba was announced as a minority investor in a then unnamed Los Angeles team, later unveiled as Angel City FC, that is scheduled to start play in the National Women's Soccer League in 2022.[48]



Year Title Role Notes
2015 Pearly Gates Corrie
2016 Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip TSA Officer Cameo
Tallulah Detective Louisa Kinnie
American Pastoral Vicky
Showing Roots Pearl
2017 My Little Pony: The Movie Queen Novo (voice)
2018 Candy Jar Julia Russell
We Are Boats Sir
2019 Beats Carla Monroe
Steven Universe: The Movie Bismuth (voice)
Miss Virginia[49] Virginia Walden
2020 Really Love[50] Chenai Hungwe
2021 National Champions Katherine Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
2012 Blue Bloods Nurse Episode: "Nightmares"
2013 How to Live Like a Lady Acting Teacher Television film
2013–2019 Orange Is the New Black Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren Recurring role (season 1); main role (seasons 2–7)
2014 Saturday Night Live Daughter Dudley Episode: "Woody Harrelson/Kendrick Lamar"
2015 Comedy Bang! Bang! Herself Episode: "Uzo Aduba Wears a White Blouse and Royal Blue Heels"
The Wiz Live! Glinda the Good Witch Television special
2016–2019 Steven Universe Bismuth Recurring voice role, 9 episodes
2018–2019 3Below: Tales of Arcadia Officer Kubritz Recurring voice role, 11 episodes
2018–present Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir Nora Césaire/Anansi Voice role, 4 episodes
2020 Steven Universe Future Bismuth Voice role; episode: "Bismuth Casual"
Mrs. America Shirley Chisholm Miniseries
2021 In Treatment Dr. Brooke Taylor Main role[51]
Solos Sasha Episode: "Sasha"[52]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Herself Episode: "Hair"


Year Title Role Notes
2006 The Seven Amphiarus New York Theatre Workshop
2007 Coram Boy Toby Imperial Theatre
2008 The Seven Amphiarus La Jolla Playhouse
2009 Eclipsed Helena Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
A Civil War Christmas Hannah Huntington Theatre
2011 Godspell Company Circle in the Square Theatre
2013 Venice Anna Monroe The Public Theater
2016 The Maids Solange Trafalgar Studios

Awards and nominations

List of awards and nominations.
Year[a] Organization Work(s) Category Result
2014 Critics' Choice Television Award Best Guest Performer in a Comedy Series Orange Is the New Black Won
2021 Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Television Movie Mrs. America Won
2016 Glamour Awards Comedy Actress Orange Is the New Black Nominated
2015 Golden Globe Award Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Nominated
2016 Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Nominated
2015 NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated
2016 Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated
2017 Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated
2018 Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated
2019 Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated
2014 Primetime Emmy Award Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Won
2015 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series Won
2017 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series Nominated
2020 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie Mrs. America Won
2021 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series In Treatment Nominated
2013 Satellite Awards Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Orange Is The New Black Nominated
2015 Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Female Actor in a Comedy Series Won
2015 Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Comedy Series Won
2016 Outstanding Female Actor in a Comedy Series Won
2016 Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Comedy Series Won
2017 Outstanding Female Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated
2017 Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Comedy Series Won
2018 Outstanding Female Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated
2018 Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Comedy Series Nominated


  1. ^ Year in which awards ceremony was held.


  1. ^ Jackson, Dory; Jordan, Julie (September 12, 2021). "Surprise! OITNB's Uzo Aduba Secretly Married Filmmaker Robert Sweeting in 2020". People. Retrieved September 12, 2021.
  2. ^ "Godspell Talk Back – Uzo Aduba". Reviewing The Drama. March 26, 2012.
  3. ^ "UPI Almanac for Monday, Feb. 10, 2020". United Press International. February 10, 2020. Retrieved October 18, 2021. actor Uzo Aduba in 1981 (age 39)
  4. ^ Emmy Awards 2015: The complete winners list.Beats 2019 (September 21, 2015). Retrieved on December 7, 2015.
  5. ^ "Uzo Aduba Watch 'OITNB' actress speak Igbo, reveal her favourite Nigerian dish". Chidumga Izuzu. Retrieved January 29, 2016.
  6. ^ Aduba, Uzo (August 4, 2014). "Uzo Aduba: My Road to ‘Orange Is the New Black'". The Daily Beast
  7. ^ "Medfield Native Uzo Aduba Attends White House Correspondents Dinner". May 5, 2014.
  8. ^ a b c Champagne, Christine (June 8, 2014). "Behind the Breakout Role: Orange is the New Black's Uzo Aduba on Creating Crazy Eyes". Co.Create. Retrieved July 15, 2014.
  9. ^ "2001–02 Women's Track Roster". Boston University. Archived from the original on March 25, 2016. Retrieved July 11, 2014.
  10. ^ "Boston University Meet Results". Archived from the original on October 29, 2013. Retrieved October 27, 2013.
  11. ^ "Obi Aduba player profile".
  12. ^ "Translations of Xhosa - Washington, DC - Tickets, Reviews, Info and More". theatermania. Retrieved October 29, 2017.
  13. ^ "Outstanding Supporting Actress, Resident Play – 2004". Awards and nominations Theatre Washington. Retrieved October 27, 2013.
  14. ^ Isherwood, Charles (May 3, 2007). "Orphans of the Storm, Assailed by Lurid Evildoers". The New York Times. Retrieved August 24, 2016.
  15. ^ "Uzo Aduba". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved October 27, 2013.
  16. ^ "Meet the Cast: Uzo Aduba". Archived from the original on August 6, 2013. Retrieved July 28, 2013.
  17. ^ Brantley, Ben (June 15, 2013). "Of Shakespeare and Superheroes". The New York Times. Retrieved July 28, 2013.
  18. ^ "Venice, review, Off-Broadway, New York Theatre". Retrieved July 28, 2013.
  19. ^ Weber, Lindsey (July 24, 2013). "Orange Is the New Black's Uzo Aduba on Crazy Eyes, Flirting Techniques, and Peeing on the Floor". New York City: New York Media. Retrieved July 28, 2013.
  20. ^ Ryan, Maureen (August 23, 2013). "'Crazy Eyes' From 'Orange Is The New Black' Talks Flirting, Jodie Foster And That Infamous Scene". The Huffington Post. Retrieved October 27, 2013.
  21. ^ Loewenstein, Melinda (June 2, 2014). "#1 Reason Seeing Potential Beyond the Audition Created an Outstanding Ensemble for 'Orange Is the New Black'". Backstage.
  22. ^ Moynihan, Rob (January 19, 2015). "How I Got My SAG-AFTRA Card", TV Guide. p. 8
  23. ^ "Primetime Emmy Awards 2014: The winners list". CNN. August 26, 2014. Retrieved September 4, 2014.
  24. ^ "The International Press Academy Announces Nominations For The 18th Annual Satellite Awards". PR Newswire. December 2, 2013. Retrieved September 5, 2014.
  25. ^ Atkinson, Kate (June 19, 2014). "Critics' Choice TV Awards: The winners list". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved September 5, 2014.
  26. ^ Leeds, Sarene (January 26, 2015). "SAG Awards: The Complete 2015 Winners List". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved January 27, 2015.
  27. ^ Keegan, Rebecca (January 26, 2015). "SAG Awards 2015: 'Birdman' feathers its nest as Oscars nears". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 27, 2015.
  28. ^ Mitovich, Matt Webb (December 11, 2014). "Golden Globes: Fargo, True Detective Lead Nominations; Jane the Virgin, Transparent Score Multiple Nods". TVLine. Retrieved December 11, 2014.
  29. ^ "Uzo Aduba Is 'Grateful' After Tearful Emmy Win". Retrieved September 22, 2015.
  30. ^ "SAG Awards: The Complete Winners List". The Hollywood Reporter. January 30, 2016. Retrieved February 3, 2016.
  31. ^ "Golden Globes 2016: Complete list of winners and nominees". Los Angeles Times. January 10, 2016. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  32. ^ Gans, Andrew (March 20, 2014). "Uzo Aduba and Rachel Bay Jones Join Lineup for Broadway Backwards; Rush Tickets Will Be Available Day of Performance". Playbill.
  33. ^ "BROADWAY BACKWARDS" Archived January 28, 2015, at the Wayback Machine. Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS. March 2014. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  34. ^ Rich, Katey. "See a Whole New Side of Uzo Aduba in The Wiz Live!". Vanity Fair.
  35. ^ "'The Wiz Live!': Uzo Aduba's Gold Costume Was Everything". The Hollywood Reporter.
  36. ^ "Watch: 'Orange is the New Black' Star Uzo Aduba in Exclusive Trailer for Her First Movie 'Pearly Gates'". April 14, 2015.
  37. ^ Polus, Sarah (May 9, 2018). "Uzo Aduba films at the Capitol Building". Washington Post. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  38. ^ McNary, Dave (April 2, 2018). "Matthew Modine Joins Uzo Aduba in Drama 'Miss Virginia' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  39. ^ Bennett, Anita (May 14, 2019). "Uzo Aduba, James Marsden, Sarah Paulson, More Join Cate Blanchett In FX's 'Mrs. America'".
  40. ^ "Mrs. America: Season 1" – via
  41. ^ Kroll, Justin (December 17, 2019). "'Orange Is the New Black' Star Uzo Aduba Joins Lupita Nyong'o in HBO Max Series 'Americanah' (EXCLUSIVE)".
  42. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (September 11, 2019). "'Fargo': Uzo Aduba To Co-Star In Season 4 Of FX Anthology Series".
  43. ^ Petski, Denise (December 19, 2019). "'Fargo': Karen Aldridge Joins Season 4 Of FX Series".
  44. ^ N'Duka, Amanda (July 26, 2018). "Uzo Aduba, Naturi Naughton, Yootha Wong-Loi-Sing & More Round Out Cast For MACRO's 'Really Love'".
  45. ^ Hipes, Patrick (October 27, 2020). "Uzo Aduba To Star In HBO's 'In Treatment' Which Is Officially A Go For Season 4". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  46. ^ Sweeney, Emily (April 5, 2017). "Uzo Aduba honored in New York". The Boston Globe. Retrieved April 11, 2017.
  47. ^ "Uzo Aduba Announced as Heifer International's First Ever Celebrity Ambassador to Africa | Heifer International | Charity Ending Hunger And Poverty". Uzo Aduba Announced as Heifer International’s First Ever Celebrity Ambassador to Africa | Heifer International | Charity Ending Hunger And Poverty. Retrieved September 26, 2018.
  48. ^ "National Women's Soccer League awards expansion team rights to Los Angeles" (Press release). National Women’s Soccer League. July 21, 2020. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
  49. ^ McNary, Dave (November 3, 2017). "'Orange Is the New Black's' Uzo Aduba to Star in Drama 'Miss Virginia' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved May 29, 2019.
  50. ^ N'Duka, Amanda (July 26, 2018). "Uzo Aduba, Naturi Naughton, Yootha Wong-Loi-Sing & More Round Out Cast For MACRO's 'Really Love'". Deadline. Retrieved May 29, 2019.
  51. ^ "In Treatment - Dr. Brooke Taylor". HBO. Retrieved August 11, 2021.
  52. ^ Lezmi, Joshua (April 19, 2021). "'Solos,' Amazon's New Anthology Series, Debuts New Images with Anne Hathaway, Anthony Mackie, and More". Collider. Retrieved April 22, 2021.

Further reading

  • "Aduba, Uzo". Current Biography. 77. August 8, 2016.
  • Widdicombe, Lizzie (December 7, 2015). "On Ice". The New Yorker.

External links

This page was last edited on 19 October 2021, at 03:46
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