Edit
Nambi E. Kelley Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (2) | Mini Bio (1) | Trivia (2)

Overview (2)

Born in Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA
Height 5' 3" (1.6 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Nambi E. Kelley was born in New York City on a Monday to Don and Carol Kelley. Leaving New York at the age of 3, Nambi's family moved to Chicago where Nambi grew up across the street from Chicago's Ida B. Wells housing projects. An excellent student, Nambi excelled, and won a full scholarship to the prestigious Theatre School at DePaul University where she studied playwriting. Graduating in 3 years with a bachelor's of fine arts in playwriting, Nambi embarked upon the professional world of theatre-making, both as a writer and actress.

Nambi E. Kelley returns from Singapore where she co-adapted and performed in The Book of Living and Dying at the Singapore Arts Festival, commissioned by the Finger Players Theatre (Singapore) and Teatri Sbagliati (Italy). Most recent U.S. credits include: Court Martial at Fort Devens (New York debut, New Federal Theatre, winner of 6 Audelco Awards including Best Ensemble Cast and Best Production of the Year) and Charleston Olio (opposite Tony Award winner Phylicia Rashad at the 2011 National Black Theatre Festival). Ms. Kelley is also the Goodman Theatre's 2013 nominee for TCG's Fox Fellowship. Notable regional credits include: Seven Guitars (TheatreWorks Colorado Springs, Broadway World Theatre Award Nomination: Best Lead Actress, Gees Bend, (Arkansas Repertory Theatre), Lydia Diamond's Harriet Jacobs (Steppenwolf Theatre, Kansas City Rep), The Good Negro (Goodman Theatre/Hattie McDaniel Black Theatre Alliance Award nomination) The Lost Boys of Sudan (Victory Gardens), The Glass Menagerie (Steppenwolf Theatre) The Ballad of Emmett Till (Goodman Theatre), Crumbs from the Table of Joy (Goodman Theatre/Joseph Jefferson Award Nomination: Principle Actress, Ruby Dee Award Nomination Best Lead Actress) Drowning Crow (Goodman Theatre) Nikki Giovanni: New Songs for a New Day (Steppenwolf Theatre) Joe Turner's Come and Gone, (Fountain Theatre, Los Angeles), and Antigone (South Coast Repertory Theatre). Television credits include: Person of Interest (CBS) The Beast (A&E) guest starring opposite Patrick Swayze, L.A. Dragnet (ABC), City of Angels (CBS) recurring, Early Edition (CBS), Cupid (ABC), Close to Home (WB Pilot) recurring, and Strong Medicine (Lifetime). Ms. Kelley, also an award-winning, produced, and published playwright, is a member of Playwrights Unit at the Goodman Theatre 2011-12, and adapted the critically acclaimed Richard Wright's Native Son. Ms. Kelley is also a guest lecturer at Lake Forest College, The University of Illinois at Chicago, and has a B.F.A. from The Theatre School at DePaul University, formerly known as The Goodman School of Drama, and has an M.F.A. in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont.

Ms. Kelley's productions span New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and internationally. Commissioned work includes projects at The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Court Theatre, American Blues Theatre (Ensemble Member), HealthWorks Theatre (Chicago), and internationally with LATT Children's Theatre/Unibooks Publishing Company (South Korea) Teatri Sbagliati (Italy), and The Finger Players (Singapore). Most recently, Kelley returned to Singapore to perform in her co-adaptation of The Book of Living and Dying that was just published in an anthology of plays in Singapore in 2014. Writing Affiliations include: Goodman Theatre Playwrights Unit 2011-12, Steppenwolf Theatre Company New Plays Lab Playwright-In-Residence, Goodman Theatre/Ellen Stone Belic Institute/ Fellowship Recipient, Goodman Theatre Lila Wallace Fellowship, La MaMa Playwrights Symposium Playwright-In-Residence, Spoleto, Italy under the tutelage of Pulitzer prize winner Lynn Nottage, Ragdale Foundation Residency Selection Committee, Ragdale Foundation Artist in Residence, HealthWorks Theatre Colonel Stanley McNeil Playwright-In-Residence, Chicago Dramatists Playwright-In-Residence, Danny Glover's Robey Theatre Co. Playwriting Lab (Formerly The Blacksmyths At The Mark Taper Forum), and MPAACT Playwright-In-Residence (Emeritus), Chicago. Special Writing Awards/Nominations include: Joyce Award Nominee 2013, Court Theatre, Black Ensemble Theatre Playwriting Award for the Black Playwrights Initiative 2009, 3 Arts Fellowship 2009, TCG Playwrights Residency Nomination at Goodman Theatre, Ignition New Plays Festival by Artists of Color, Victory Gardens Theatre, Finalist; Chesterfield Writing Project Fellowship at Paramount Pictures, Finalist; O'Neill Playwrights Conference Nomination; Act Theatre/Seattle Repertory Nomination For Women's Playwright Festival; Williams College Stalwart Originality Playwright-In-Residence; 2 Prop Thtr New Plays Festival Awards, and Peace Maker Of The Year Award, The Peace Museum And Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream. Publications include: The Blue Shadow. Ed. Lifeline Theatre. Chicago, 2009, The Blaq Market: Monologues and Scenes. Ed. Shepsu Aakhu. Chicago: A Sakhu Publication, 2008. The Blaq Market: Essays and Plays from Afrikan Centered Theatre. Ed. Shepsu Aakhu. Chicago: A Sakhu Publication, 2006. Alibi Transcripts: Monologues of the Dark Indicted. Ed. Shepsu Aakhu. Chicago: A Sakhu Publication, 2001. Also an award-winning actress, Nambi has worked on stage and television in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, regionally, and internationally, playing opposite such artists as Phylicia Rashad, Alfre Woodard, Blair Underwood, and the late Patrick Swayze. Ms. Kelley has a B.F.A. from The Theatre School at DePaul University and an M.F.A. in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Creative Consultancy for the Artist, LLC

Trivia (2)

She was nominated for a 2006 Joseph Jefferson Award for Actress in a Principal Role in a Play for "Crumbs From the Table of Joy", at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, Illinois.
She was nominated for a 2015 Joseph Jefferson Equity Award for New Adaptation of "Native Son" at the Court Theatre and American Blues Theatre both in Chicago, Illinois.

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page