ADA Rafael Barba

Played by Raul Esparza

Actor Bio

Raúl Esparza stars as ADA Rafael Barba on the critically-acclaimed NBC/Universal Television series "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” now in its 19th season.

A star of stage and screen, Esparza is only the second actor to receive Tony nominations in all four eligible acting categories.  Born in Wilmington, Delaware and raised in Miami, Florida, Esparza studied at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.  He first drew attention with his performance as Riff Raff in the 2000 Broadway revival of “The Rocky Horror Show,” which won him the Theatre World Award.  The following year he appeared off-Broadway in “tick, tick... BOOM!,” garnering a Drama Desk Award nomination as Outstanding Actor in a Musical.

Esparza is a four-time Tony Award nominee and was recognized by the Drama Desk awards six times, including wins in 2004 (“Taboo”), 2007 (Sondheim’s “Company”), and 2008 (“The Homecoming”).  Other Broadway credits include “Cabaret,” “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,” “Speed-the-Plow,” “Arcadia” and “Leap of Faith.” He recently starred as Iachimo in Shakespeare in the Park’s “Cymbeline” in New York City.

Esparza made his film debut in 2006 in Sidney Lumet's “Find Me Guilty.”  Other films include Wes Craven's “My Soul to Take,” “Trouble in the Heights” and James Lapine’s “Custody.”  His television credits include "Law & Order," "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," “A Gifted Man,” “Medium,” “666 Park Avenue,” “Pushing Daisies” and a recurring role on NBC’s critically-acclaimed series “Hannibal.”

He recently lent his voice to the animated series “Dora and Friends” and “BoJack Horseman,” and the upcoming Blue Sky feature film “Ferdinand.”

Esparza resides in New York City.  Follow him on Twitter at