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Why April Sexton From Chicago Med Looks So Familiar

Yaya DaCosta's nurse April Sexton is featured as a key player in NBC's perennially popular drama "Chicago Med" right from the series' premiere episode in 2015. A familiar face to fans for the show's first six seasons, Sexton is often seen in the company of Charge Nurse Maggie Campbell (Marlyne Barrett), as well as spending quite a lot of screen time with Brian Tee's Dr. Ethan Choi. As it turns out, April's interaction with Choi eventually finds the two falling for each other and getting engaged before their relationship hits rough waters and they break up at the end of Season 6. 

After departing the show at the conclusion of Season 6, Sexton isn't seen again until her return in the Season 8 premiere. In that episode, she and Choi begin to patch up their relationship and, eventually, are married in that season's ninth episode. But April's return to the show doesn't last long, as she and Ethan soon decide to leave the hospital and begin their mobile medical outreach service. 

While Nurse Sexton was a fan favorite on "Chicago Med" for years, many fans of the series may have the feeling they've seen the actress elsewhere without quite being sure where. The truth is, they could've spotted Yaya DaCosta in numerous other TV shows and films both before and after her long run on "Chicago Med."

Yaya DaCosta's early career included America's Top Model and screen time with Antonio Banderas

Before her stint as April Sexton on "Chicago Med," Yaya DaCosta made her first big splash, not as an actress, but as a model. And in 2004, DaCosta turned up on a TV show that ranks as one of the most memorable modeling competition series of all time: "America's Top Model." While DaCosta didn't win that year's top honors on the show, the 21-year-old clearly made an impression with the judges, coming in as runner-up. Her performance on "America's Top Model" served as a precursor to her first acting gigs, which included a guest spot on UPN's "Eve" and several music videos, including Chingy's "Pullin' Me Back," Sean Kingston's "Beautiful Girls," and Jay-Z's "Roc Boys."

On the strength of her music video exposure, the tempo of DaCosta's career picked up significantly, as she was cast in her first major supporting role in the 2006 dance flick, "Take the Lead." As struggling dancer LaRhette Dudley, DaCosta shares the screen with the ballroom dance teacher portrayed by Antonio Banderas, with her character playing a central role in the film's romantic subplot.

Yaya DaCosta starred on an iconic soap opera and a hit ABC sitcom

More than a few actors got their first show business break on a soap opera. And in this respect, Yaya DaCosta's Hollywood career got a major boost when she was tabbed for ongoing appearances in the long-enduring soap, "All My Children." Cast as Cassandra Foster in the series, the actress plays the adopted teen daughter of Angela Hubbard (Debbi Morgan) and Jacob Foster (Darnell Williams). As Cassandra, DaCosta starred on the legendary soap for a total of 44 episodes, giving soap fans plenty of time to get to know her well.

Just a year after her run on "All My Children," DaCosta landed another recurring role on the fashion-centric ABC hit sitcom, "Ugly Betty." As Nicole "Nico" Slater on the series, DaCosta's character turns up in the show's fourth season, replacing Jowharah Jones, who played Nico during the sitcom's first season. 

Throughout seven episodes of "Ugly Betty," DaCosta's Nico is a PETA-supporting young woman who sets out to gaslight her own mother by turning up covered in blood and claiming she's killed her own boyfriend. But it turns out it's all just a lame-brained extortion plot to scam poor ol' mom out of her cash. And while Nico's career as a criminal fails badly on "Ugly Betty," DaCosta's career as an actress was just shifting into high gear.

Yaya DaCosta portrayed an iconic musical superstar in Whitney

Over the next few years after "Ugly Betty," fans could have spotted Yaya DaCosta — sometimes under the name Yaya Alafia — in a wide range of other episodic TV series and feature films. These appearances included roles in "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" and "The Butler" with Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, and David Oyelowo.

But in 2015, DaCosta's career took yet another giant step forward with her starring role in the high-profile Lifetime TV movie, "Whitney." As the late, chart-topping R&B pop star Whitney Houston, DaCosta delivered a powerful star turn and poignant exploration of the singer's often turbulent and troubled life.

But as it happens, 2015 was auspicious for another reason for Yaya DaCosta; that's the year she began her run as Nurse April Sexton on "Chicago Med." And while the actress left the "One Chicago" medical series in Season 8, fans may well have seen DaCosta since then playing Angela Vaughn in the Fox show "Our Kind of People" or Andrea Freeman in Netflix's "The Lincoln Lawyer."