Chris Dixonplayed by Elvis Nolasco
As principal of Thurgood Marshall High School, Chris Dixon is passionate about fostering young minds, and working to create a safe environment for his students. That’s not to say it’s ever easy. Chris is forced to fight for his numerous students through heated school board meetings and impassioned budget sessions. For Chris, the problems he and his students face are altogether different than the ones at The Leyland School, but will prove to be no less challenging to overcome.
Elvis Nolasco was born and raised in the Washington Heights area of New York City. From a young age, Elvis was drawn to entertainment. In his early years he would spend evenings dancing to Latin music in his family home. His love of salsa music led to an interest in break dancing, where he spent nights dancing with the break dancing group, Soul Sonic Rockers. His dance ability and style would later help open doors to establish a solid career that spans film, theatre and television. His high school acting teacher, Robert Stonebridge, believed in Elvis's raw talent and encouraged him to explore acting as a possible career path.
Soon after arriving in Philadelphia to study acting, Elvis began winning a succession of leading roles in local theaters including the Arden Theatre, Freedom Theatre, Walnut Street Theatre and American Musical Theatre Festival. It was not long before Elvis was picked to co-star in the hit comedy I Like It Like That with Lauren Valez and with Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony winning actress Rita Moreno. Soon, Elvis was cast by Spike Lee for the film Clockers with Mekhi Phifer and Delroy Lindo. Elvis began building a line of great performances in several independent hits, including his critically acclaimed role in the film In Search of a Dream, the first all-Spanish speaking cast sanctioned by the Screen Actors Guild and the number one grossing independent Latino film.
Elvis has generated a stream of memorable film characters including roles in The Kitchen, Rock Steady, Vodka Rocks, Inconsolable Memories, I'm Not Rappaport, Prison Song, Philadelphia, Secuestro and Oldboy. He recently worked with Danny Trejo, Michael K. Williams and Fat Joe in the film 179th Street, set for release Winter 2014. He also played the lead in the film White, which debuted on PBS for Futurestates.tv, in spring 2011.
Elvis has guest starred in several television series including Law & Order, NYPD Blue, Law & Order SVU and Third Watch. He also appeared in the recurring role as Abe in the Spike Lee series Miracle Boys. Elvis continues to work on stage, both in off Broadway and regional theatre venues including New York Theatre Works, Baltimore Center Stage, Young Playwrights Festival and INTAR. He was also in the smash hit NYC off-Broadway production, Celia: The Life and Music of Celia Cruz, at New World Stages. Elvis currently tours a one man show, “The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao,” based on the 2007 Pulitzer prize winning novel by Junot Diaz. Elvis played the role of Pito in the play Firehouse at The Whitefire Theatre in Los Angeles, where his performance earned him rave reviews.
Elvis was last seen on stage as the character Crooks in the classic play Of Mice and Men at The Missing Piece Theatre in L.A. His most recent screen credits include the film Low Hanging Juicy Fruit (Mango Bajito) with Danny Trejo, set for release in the Dominican Republic in 2014 and the HBO television movie Da Brick, directed by Spike Lee and executive produced and written by John Ridley. Elvis has a memorable role in Spike Lee’s feature film The Sweet Blood Of Jesus, set for release in Fall 2014 and is a series regular in John Ridley’s new ABC’s mid-season drama American Crime, scheduled to premiere in 2015.
Throughout the years, Elvis has utilized his love for the arts and talent as an educator to work with young minds everywhere. He has worked with Family Services Of Philadelphia's Plays For Living program and the Young Playwrights Festival Of Philadelphia to help high school students develop their playwriting skills. In New York, he has worked with The Nite Star Theatre Company to help develop educational theatre pieces that deal with family and domestic violence. He also worked with the Manhattan Theatre Club to guide high school students in the structure and development of playwriting. One of his most rewarding experiences was mentoring and teaching drama to children ages 7 to 14 at the Children’s Aid Society.
Elvis continues to stay in the creative realm. He just wrote the short film Invisible Wounds and will also serve as the film's director.