Lee Kelley "sang before she could talk." As a teenager, she began her professional career doing stock and regional theater, throughout her native New England. She also studied voice at Boston Conservatory, at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto and at the Banff School of Fine Arts, where she toured Alberta with their production of Madama Butterfly. At the same time, she earned a liberal arts degree (Magna Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Moving to New York, she studied acting at the H-B and Stella Adler Studios as well as dance with Phil Black and Robert Audy. She then combined performing (Off-Broadway, stock, regional film and television) with coaching.
As a coach, she worked first with the Broadway kids, but she quickly expanded to adults. She developed a cold reading technique to fill the gap left by the acting schools. Her students have appeared in countless commercials and industrials, on soaps, in television series, on Broadway and in National Touring Companies and in films. She has been a featured speaker on cold readings for the SAG Foundation in New York and Los Angeles, garnering rave reviews. She has conducted cold reading seminars in Boston and Washington D.C. and Speak American for SAG/AFTRA@Work in New York.
In addition, Lee has taught public speaking and voice and diction at two New York colleges, Touro and CUNY. She coached public speaking to people from numerous fields and from all over the U.S. at the International Platform Association's Washington D.C. Conventions. For the I.P.A., she also directed and acted in special presentations. She was tapped to host their Monologue Competition and she wrote "Broadway Views", a column for their Theater Wing publication.
In voice and diction, she created a simplified method for the articulation of American English. Taught to actors, students and business professionals from all over the world, the method offers innovative exercises and groundbreaking discoveries in the interaction of select sounds critical to the easy flow, rhythm and intonation that normally elude the non-native speaker.
Lee served as the Chair of the legendary Rehearsal Club's Founding Centennial celebrations on New York in June, 2013. She was MC at a Lincoln Center multi-media presentation and on-stage interviewer with Blythe Danner at the Tribeca Film Center.
Currently, Lee Kelley is a New York-based acting and speech coach, and public speaker. She teaches private classes, seminars, and classes and workshops to actors, students and professionals from all over the world.
SAG/AFTRA, Actors' Equity Association, The Dramatists Guild
The Rehearsal Club (Chair, 2007-2014)