USC Comedy Festival, Vol. 6 Presents: WOMEN PERFORMING COMEDY

February 25, 2023, 1:30 P.M.

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex, 900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007

USC Comedy at the School of Cinematic Arts, Women of Cinematic Arts,
and USC Visions and Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative,
invite you and a guest to attend a special comedy panel discussion



Featuring Emily Hampshire, Cynthia Kaye McWilliams,
and Andrea Savage

Moderated by Women of Cinematic Arts Board Member Shannon Hardy

1:30 P.M. on Saturday, February 25th, 2023

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108
900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007




Presented during the USC Comedy Festival, Vol. 6,
taking place from February 24th - 26th, 2023

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This year, the USC Comedy Festival is pleased to partner with Postmates!
Attendees at the Festival will be eligible to redeem a code good for $25 off your Postmates order.
Codes will be available for attendees only. No order minimum. One per user.

About the Panelists


Montreal native and SAG Award Winner Emily Hampshire is best known for her role as “Stevie Budd” in the hit series Schitt’s Creek opposite Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara. The series made history by winning nine Emmy awards and in all major categories including Outstanding Comedy Series, Lead Actor and Actress in a Comedy Series, Supporting Actor and Actress in a Comedy Series, and Best Writing and Directing for a Comedy Series. Hampshire has won six consecutive Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy awards at the Canadian Screen Awards and has won a SAG Award for her role on Schitt’s Creek.

Hampshire will next be seen starring as the female lead in the highly anticipated series THE RIG; a six-part thriller directed by Line of Duty and Bodyguard director John Strickland. Additionally, Hampshire will release her first graphic novel, Amelia Aierwood: Basic Witch in partnership with Z2. Amelia Aierwood: Basic Witch follows the least-favorite daughter of L.A.’s most famous family of witches, the Aierwoods. Amelia’s sisters have all followed in the footsteps of their prominent parents but everything Amelia does is just a little… off-brand. The book hits stands April 11, 2023.

Hampshire was recently seen in the romantic comedy, The End of Sex, which premiered at the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival. Hampshire just wrapped on the film HUMANE, which takes place over a single day months after a global environmental collapse has forced world leaders to take extreme measures to reduce the earth’s population.

Hampshire has a robust development slate as a writer and creator. Hampshire is currently in development on the remake of Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman alongside Norman Lear. Hampshire will co-write, executive produce and star as the title character of “Mary Hartman.” She has also partnered with Elliot Page and his company Page Boy Productions to write and create a new television project and starring vehicle for Elliot that is currently in development.

On television, Hampshire was seen starring opposite Adrien Brody in Chapelwaite, Epix’s period limited series based on Stephen King’s short story Jerusalem’s Lot which premiered earlier this year. Previously, she starred as ‘Jennifer Goines’ in Syfy/Hulu's 12 Monkeys and garnered numerous accolades and acclaim for her performance in the character first made iconic by Brad Pitt.

Hampshire’s recent credits also include The Death and Life of John F. Donovan with Natalie Portman and Kit Harrington from celebrated director Xavier Dolan, Darren Aronofsky’s feature Mother! and the indie Never Saw It Coming. In 2012, she received the Birks Canadian Diamond Award at the Cannes Film Festival for her career and work in David Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis.

Hampshire has also been featured on Variety’s ‘Power of Pride 2020 List’ and ‘International Star You Need To Know’ as well as being featured on the NextGen Canada list by The Hollywood Reporter. Hampshire has been a longtime supporter of the LGBTQ+ community of which she is also a member, Hampshire identifies as pansexual. As one of the stars of Schitt’s Creek, which has been hailed as one of the most positive platforms for LGBTQ+ representation, Hampshire has used her celebrity and voice to support and spread awareness for the LGBTQ+ community.

In 2020 at the start of the pandemic, Hampshire hosted and produced a weekly live-streamed talk show, entitled Humpday with Hampshire, to raise money for The Actor’s Fund’s Covid-19 emergency financial assistance and services program.


Cynthia Kaye McWilliams will next be seen in BET's AVERAGE JOE, prior to that she was in the Apple TV miniseries THE LAST DAYS OF PTOLEMY GREY, where she plays opposite Samuel L. Jackson and starring opposite Michael Chiklis on the Paramount Network series COYOTE and in a recurring role on the Amazon series BOSCH.

She was born in Berlin, Germany, grew up primarily in Kansas City, Kansas and graduated from the prestigious Theater School of DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois with further training at Steppenwolf Theatre. Just out of college, Cynthia booked a supporting role in Warner Brothers' THE LAKE HOUSE, followed by a recurring role on FOX's PRISON BREAK. She then landed lead roles in two pilots-- Family Practice and a Damon Wayans CBS project.

After working in independent films, Cynthia returned to television on another FOX series, CHICAGO CODE. Shortly after, she would land a series regular on NAACP award winning comedy, THE REAL HUSBANDS OF HOLLYWOOD opposite the hilarious Kevin Hart. During 5 seasons of filming, she also had recurring roles on SURVIVOR'S REMORSE on STARZ, ABC's NASHVILLE and BOSCH on Amazon. She also booked the lead in the NBC drama pilot LOVE IS A FOUR LETTER WORD.

Photo Credit: Rainer Hosch

Andrea Savage is a comedic actress, writer, director, producer and podcaster, best known for creating the breakout television show, I’M SORRY, which she wrote, directed, produced and starred in. Andrea can currently be seen in the hit Paramount+ show TULSA KING. Originally hailing from The Groundlings, Andrea has starred as “President Montez” on VEEP, “Helen Basch” on Showtime’s EPISODES, and “Rhonda” on CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM as well as in STEP BROTHERS, SLEEPING WITH OTHER PEOPLE, the cult hit DOG BITES MAN on Comedy Central and two seasons of THE HOTWIVES series on HULU.

Andrea also launched a popular podcast called Andrea Savage: A Grown-Up Woman #buttholes which highlights the idea that just because you are an adult, it doesn’t mean you have to be lame. The show features Andrea’s funniest friends, such as Mila Kunis, Jon Hamm, Paul Rudd, Kaitlin Olson and Ray Romano.

Andrea voices roles on the popular animated shows THE GREAT NORTH and THE FREAK BROTHERS.

On the feature side, she can be seen next in PLUS/MINUS opposite Lili Reinhart and Luke Wilson and YOU PEOPLE, from Kenya Barris and Jonah Hill, both streaming on Netflix later this year. Andrea is represented by CAA, MGMT Entertainment and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush, Kaller, Gellman, Meigs & Fox.

SHANNON HARDY (WCA Board Member, Moderator)

Shannon Hardy is a comedian, actor and writer from Massachusetts. Hardy is a WeScreenplay Diverse Voices finalist, Launch Pad Pilot Writing semifinalist, and Yes and Laughter Lab finalist. More recently her pilot, THE GODMOTHER, was #11 on The Red List's top comedy pilots. Her short films have been featured in Clexacon, LA Women’s Independent Film Festival, AGLIFF, LA Cinefest, NFFTY, The Advocate/Pride, and Film Pipeline. Shannon got her start hosting NESN's Dirty Water TV and in 2019 began producing various comedy shows around LA. More recently she appeared in Phoebe Robinson's Facebook Holiday Mess sketch, and up next you can catch her hosting her monthly drag comedy show, Tight 10's.

About Women of Cinematic Arts (WCA)

Women of Cinematic Arts is a collective of female and gender-nonconforming graduates of USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. Through an engaging slate of professional and social programming, we offer opportunities for our members to band together, support each other from graduation to retirement, and dismantle inequality in the entertainment industry. You can find out more information and join on their website.

About the USC Comedy Festival, Vol. 6

The 6th Edition of the USC Comedy Festival returns to campus in person this February to celebrate community and share laughter, while exploring the changing nature of comedy in contemporary society.

The festival kicks off with standup comics Niles Abston, Jena Friedman, Alyssa Limperis, Christina Catherine Martinez, and Moses Storm debating the topic: Does Comedy Have to be Funny? with Vulture Senior Editor Jesse David Fox. On Saturday, the Women of Cinematic Arts (WCA) return with the ever popular Women of Comedy panel, this year featuring two unique sessions - one featuring showrunners, writers and directors, including Debby Wolfe (Lopez vs. Lopez), Brittani Nichols (Abbott Elementary), and SCA Alumna Thembi Banks (Only Murders in the Building), and one highlighting on-screen performers, including Emily Hampshire (Schitt’s Creek), Cynthia Kaye McWilliams (The Real Husbands of Hollywood), and Andrea Savage (I’m Sorry, Veep). Saturday afternoon, Jesse David Fox will explore The Changing Flavor of Series Comedy with Showrunners Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend), Steve Levitan (Modern Family, Reboot), and Gina Yashere (Bob Hearts Abishola). The festival's Saturday night program will honor legendary comic actress and Emmy-winner Catherine O’Hara (SCTV, Beetlejuice, Home Alone, Waiting for Guffman, Schitt’s Creek), recipient of our 2023 Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Masters of Comedy Award, in conversation with John Michael Higgins (Best in Show). Our final day will shine a spotlight on the 2023 Best Picture Nominated feature Triangle of Sadness with Best Director Nominee Ruben Östlund, followed by Marvel’s She-Hulk: Attorney at Law with Series Creator Jessica Gao, and conclude with An Evening with Billy Eichner, hosted by Emmy-winner Wayne Federman.

Visit the USC Comedy Festival, Vol. 6 Homepage:
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About USC Comedy at the School of Cinematic Arts

In 2010 USC became the first university in the nation to offer a program dedicated to training filmmakers in the art of comedy. USC Comedy at the School of Cinematic Arts offers instruction in the writing, directing, production as well as the history and theory of comedy. Students work with a distinguished, award-winning faculty of comedy professionals to discover and develop their comedic voices, while getting unrivaled access to the field through workshops, internships, demonstrations and screenings and festivals.

USC Comedy boasts an award-winning faculty that includes Jack Epps Jr. (The Secret of My SuccessLegal EaglesTop Gun), Barnet Kellman (Murphy BrownMad About YouGeorge Lopez), David Isaacs (Cheers, FrasierM*A*S*H*), Robert Townsend (Diary of A Single Mom, The Parent Hood), Rob Schiller (The King of Queens), Andy Cadiff (Last Man Standing, Spin City), Jay Kogen (The Simpsons, Frasier), Chris Guerrero (BuzzFeed, Super Deluxe), Dave Goetsch (The Big Bang Theory), F J Pratt (Sullivan & Son) and Tim Marx (Young Sheldon), to name just a few.
Our students benefit from the expertise and participation of SCA Comedy Alumni such as Jay Roach (Austin PowersMeet the Parents), Tim Story (Barber ShopRide Along), Judd Apatow (Girls, Superbad, Knocked Up),  Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, Spy), Peter Segal (Tommy BoyGet Smart), Gabe Sachs (Freaks and Geeks), Jason Reitman (JunoUp in the Air), Nahnatchka Khan (Fresh Off The Boat), Prentice Penny (Insecure), Cathy Yuspa & Josh Goldsmith (What Women Want, King of Queens), Thembi Banks (Only Murders in the Building), Tracy Oliver (Girls Trip, First Wives Club), Jon M. Chu (Crazy Rich Asians), among many other luminaries and industry professionals.

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About USC Visions and Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative

Visions and Voices is a university-wide arts and humanities initiative that is unparalleled in higher education. The initiative was established by former USC President C. L. Max Nikias during his tenure as provost in order to fulfill the goals set forth in USC's strategic plan; to communicate USC's core values to students; and to affirm the human spirit. Emphasizing the university's commitment to interdisciplinary approaches, the initiative features a spectacular array of events conceived and organized by faculty and schools throughout the university. The series includes theatrical productions, music and dance performances, conferences, lectures, film screenings and many other special events both on and off campus. Each program invites students to dialogue and interact with artists, writers, professors and special guests. These interactions provide a dynamic experience of the arts and humanities and encourage active exploration of USC's core values, including freedom of inquiry and expression, team spirit, appreciation of diversity, commitment to serving one's community, entrepreneurial spirit, informed risk-taking, ethical conduct and the search for truth.

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Contact Information

Name: Alessandro Ago