Stacks Image 3786
Stacks Image 3789
Stacks Image 3792
Stacks Image 3795
dave paladino champion play film
Stacks Image 159
Stacks Image 160
Stacks Image 163
Stacks Image 164
Stacks Image 165

David is an award-winning actor who's becoming known for his depth and ability to play an array of characters across a diverse landscape of ethnicities.

David was born in Dekalb, IL and spent the first twelve years of his life living in Chicago before moving to Los Angeles.

Secretly, David always wanted to be an actor but found his comfort as a young boy playing and excelling in sports. In high school David was a football star who eventually went on to star at the University of San Diego where he lead the team in tackles his Junior and Senior year. David also coached one season for USD.

In college, David’s grandmother, to whom he was very close, passed way. This tragedy inspired David to look deeper at what he wanted in his life. He decided to take an acting class at Mesa Junior College in San Diego. At Mesa, David was fortunate enough to hear former alumni Annette Benning speak. He was inspired and in love. Not only with Ms. Benning but also with acting.

Upon graduating with a degree in Business, David moved back to Los Angeles where he started working doing accounting for a commercial lighting firm. Eventually David started taking acting classes in Los Angeles. And shortly thereafter booked his first play at the Stella Adler Theatre in Hollywood. David later went on to study Shakespeare with film and stage star Alfred Molina. While still keeping his 9-to-5 job doing accounting, David then joined the Beverly Hills Playhouse and started studying with Milton Katselas. Eventually he left his ‘day job’ and tried his hand at acting more seriously.

David then made a life-changing discovery regarding his heritage and parenting. This Discovery, David’s life story, aired nationally on NPR’s Award Winning Radio Show, 'This American Life'. This interview led to offers for its film/television rights. David decided to write a one-act play about his story entitled Champion; in which he also stars. Champion, the play, was originally produced by Camelot Artists Productions. David, co-actor Ski Carr and director Tommy Hicks were invited to perform Champion at the Nation Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Champion received rave reviews and became a festival hit. Champion went on to be performed around the country including Miami, Sacramento and most notably a run in New York City. Champion is now a full length screenplay in development.

David has won and been nominated for several awards as an actor, playwright and producer. Among some of his achievements is an Ovation Award (Los Angeles’ Tony Award) Winner Best Lead Actor for his role in Athol Fugard’s ‘The Island'. (The play was actually devised by Athol and the two original actors, John Kani and Winston Ntshona.) David also received an NAACP Nomination and an LA Weekly Award for the same role.  He was also one of the producers for the play.

David currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Elisha, where he also teaches/coaches actors at The Acting Center in Hollywood.


Stacks Image 167
Stacks Image 168
After some time away writing, producing, getting married...David is excited about several of his upcoming acting roles, most notably 'Brian Taylor' in freedom for joe.
Stacks Image 196
Stacks Image 197
Stacks Image 166
this american life david paladino dave

with Cris Beam and Ira Glass

David's unique life-story has been the subject of many articles & blogs.

Listen to NPR's Hit Radio Show
This American Life as they speak with David and his family in this captivating interview.

Stacks Image 210
Stacks Image 211
Stacks Image 198
dave paladino champion play film
David's critically acclaimed one-act play Champion is now available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Lulu.

David has also been writing for the screen which includes penning the script for
Champion the movie.
Stacks Image 214
Stacks Image 212