Kerry Ellis has fast become recognised as the leading lady of West End musicals from her starring roles in London and on Broadway. She has also achieved chart-topping success as a recording artist signed to Universal Decca with her debut album Anthems.
Kerry originated the role of Meat, in Queen’s We Will Rock You and was the first British Elphaba in the West End smash, Wicked, for which Kerry won the 2008 Whatsonstage.com Award for ‘Best Takeover in a Role’. She then immediately transferred to Broadway and played Elphaba at the Gershwin Theater for 6 months, where she won the Broadway.com Audience Award for Favourite Female Breakthrough Performance, before returning to London for 6 months in 2009.
Her many other leading role credits include Nancy in Oliver! at Drury lane, Eliza Doolittle My Fair Lady, Ellen in Miss Saigon and Fantine in Les Miserables.
Kerry’s first major CD release was the amazing Wicked in Rock, a collaboration with long time friend and Queen guitarist, Brian May. This led to her being signed to Universal as a solo recording artist and her debut album Anthems was released in 2010 on Decca Records.
The success of the album, which reached No.15 in the UK album chart, and No.10 in the UK pop club charts (for Defying Gravity), led to a major tour Anthems: The Concert throughout 2011, which kicked off at the Royal Albert Hall. She has performed internationally promoting the album, including performances at the Royal Variety Performance, at the Laurence Olivier Awards, duetting with Barry Manilow on BBC Television and Radio, at G.A.Y., on Loose Women, Alan Titchmarsh Show, BBC Breakfast, at the Henley Festival alongside John Barrowman, the Queen’s Jubilee Concert at Buckingham Palace, continuing to a run of An Audience With Kerry Ellis at the Shaw Theatre.
Other performances include singing the National Anthem for the FA Cup match at Wembley Stadium/live on Sky Sports, a sold out tour of Champions of Rock in Sweden, and playing Svetlana to critical acclaim in Chess at the Royal Albert Hall opposite Idina Menzel and Josh Groban, which was released on DVD and CD and screened on US network television, Thank You For The Music the BBC Radio 2 ABBA concert in Hyde Park, Night of 1000 Voices, The Festival of Remembrance (both Royal Albert Hall) and she headlined the BBC Proms in the Park 2010.
She has recorded Somebody to Love which features on the new best selling Only Men Aloud album Band of Brothers, Come What May with Alfie Boe on his first album Bring Him Home and Wind Beneath My Wings with the Central Band of the RAF on their top ten album Reach for the Skies.
Workshops include Way Beyond Blue, written by Imogen Stubbs and directed by Trevor Nunn, was special guest star at the recent charity gala performance of Children of Eden at the Prince of Wales Theatre.
In 2012 Kerry joined forces with Brian May again and performed a new arrangement of ‘I Who Have Nothing’ at the Sanremo Festival in Italy, which was screened, live across Europe, The pair recently recorded a new version of the well known song ‘Born Free’ and shot a documentary in South Africa to accompany the track highlighting the charity work of the Born Free foundation.
Kerry headlined at the 2012 ‘Night of a 1000 voices’ and performed and recorded her own Friday Night is Music special for BBC Radio 2, she has also performed a one woman show for a weeks residency at the new Hippodrome venue in Leicester Square.
Also Kerry has been involved in the Les Miserables feature film alongside headlining various festivals across the country. At the end of 2012 she starred in the Arena tour of Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds alongside Jason Donavan and Ricky Wilson of the Kaiser Chiefs.
Brain and Kerry embarked on their second leg of the Born Free Tour round the UK and Europe during the summer of 2013 accompanied with the release of their single “The Kissing me song” which Kerry co-wrote plus a live album recording of Born Free.
Kerry went on tour for two weeks with the 20th Anniversary Tour of Rent playing the role of Mimi as well as also performing her own show at the London Palladium in May, which was a huge success.
Kerry has completed her second album which is a collection of musical theatre tracks and some more contemporary ones to tie in with her first headline UK tour. This has been in association with Pledge music allowing loyal her fans to be part of the process. Despite being busy completing her album Kerry was thrilled to be asked to return to the Apollo Theatre to reprise her role of Elphaba in Wicked for a limited run.
Kerry’s dream of performing her first solo concert at the London Palladium materialised in May 2013. The concert was such a huge success that it sparked a desire for her to reach out to all her fans by taking it up and down the country. Kerry did thirteen dates across the UK finishing at The Cadogan Hall. The concert celebrated her theatre career to date, singing songs from all the roles she has created and played.
Kerry took over from Nicole Scherzinger as the role of Grizabella in Cat’s in 2015 at the London Palladium.
In June last year continuing her long term working relationship with Brian May she performed to a 12,000 seat Arena in Verona which was televised across Italy.
After many more concerts Kerry started her own radio show on “Encore Radio’ which is now a big success and loved by people everywhere.
Kerry & Brian completed an extended tour of Italy and Eastern Europe called “one Voice’ and went on to record and release a new album with Sony records called ‘Golden Days’
More shows, Murder Ballard at the Arts theatre London and touring with the show Wonderland, and Kerry has just completed her first role in a straight play ‘The Importance of being Earnest” playing Gwendolen Fairfax.
20th anniversary solo tour with a new band and new music from Brian and also new friend Frank Wildhorn, and working on new music for next album.
www.kerryellis.com Twitter and instagram – kerryjaneellis1