Born This Way

Born This Way/A&E/2015-2016+ (Down Syndrome)

Steven (Steven Clark), one of seven young adults with Down syndrome who pursue relationships, employment and strive for greater independence in Southern California.

born-this-way-cast

The original cast of characters with Down Syndrome include:

  • Cristina Sanzo works at a middle school and has a boyfriend of four years who she plans to marry. Her family hails from Spain, and Cristina enjoys learning the language and cooking traditional Spanish meals.
  • Elena Ashmore was born in Japan to a Japanese mother, Hiromi, and an Australian father, Stephen. She is opinionated and enjoys practicing traditional Japanese Taiko drumming and cooking.
  • John  Tucker is pursuing a career in rap music and working on his debut album, “JT: The Project.” Besides music, John enjoys writing and dancing.
  • Megan Bomgaars is a budding entrepreneur. She created a video entitled, Don’t Limit Me, and speaks around the country about inclusion and inspiration. She also attends  University of Colorado, Colorado Springs and manages an ice dye clothing company called, “Megology.”
  • Rachel Ostergard works in the mail room for an insurance company and is looking for the right guy to marry. Rachel is pre-diabetic.
  • Sean McElwee is an avid golfer and sportsman who also loves the ladies. He dreams of having his own home but until his fortunes change, he shares a bachelor pad with a friend.
  • Steven Clark works as a dishwasher in Angels Stadium in Anaheim and in customer service at a local grocery store. He loves movies and knows the title and year of every Oscar-winning film. Steven has a rare form of Down syndrome known as Mosaic Down syndrome.

Note: The reality show documentary was produced by Bunim/Murray Productions whose other credits include THE REAL WORLD, PROJECT RUNWAY and KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS.

“We are proud to be airing this important and extraordinary series and hope it will inspire meaningful conversations about people with differences…BORN THIS WAY is a show with honesty, humor and heart that celebrates and embraces diversity.” – A&E Network.

The series also showed parents talk about the joy their children bring to their family, and the challenges they face in helping them live as independently as possible.

The show first aired on A&E Network in December of 2015.  In 2016, the program won an Emmy for outstanding unstructured reality program at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards in Los Angeles.

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