Broadway actress Annaleigh Ashford is a Tony Award-winning performer, who has starred in musicals across the United States for over 15 years. With notable theatre credits including Wicked and Kinky Boots, she was set to make her debut West End performance as Dot in the anticipated transfer of James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park with George.
Born in Colorado in 1985, Ashford spent her early childhood competing in track and field events, later enrolled for dance lessons by her mother at Andrée's Dance and Performing Arts Center. Taking voice and movement lessons, she was later cast in a production of Ruthless! where she made her professional theatre debut at the tender age of nine years old. But, this production started Ashford’s eventual path to the Broadway stage, appearing in productions of Little Women, Anything Goes and West Side Story and labelled “The Teen To Watch” in the Colorado area.
Graduating high school at 16 and college at 19, Ashford later made her adult professional theatre debut at just 20 years old, cast as Pfanne in a US National Tour of Wicked. Performing around the United States, she eventually made her debut on the Great White Way as Margot in the original Broadway cast of Legally Blonde. But, it wasn’t long until she returned to Oz, taking over the role of Glinda in the Broadway production of Wicked in 2007.
Her notable theatre credits include her Tony Award-winning performance as Essie Carmichael in the 2015 revival of You Can’t Take It With You, starring alongside James Earl Jones. She’s also given a Tony Award-nominated performance as Lauren in Kinky Boots and performed in Sylvia at the Cort Theatre, earning a Drama Desk Award nomination.
Ashford first played the role of Dot in Sunday in the Park with George in a concert version at New York City Center, with the production later receiving a limited run at the Hudson Theatre. A star cast including Jake Gyllenhaal and Ruthie Ann Miles appeared in the musical revival from 11 - 23 Feb. 2017, and it was considered one of the standout musical productions of that Broadway season.
Aside from her glittering Broadway career, Ashford’s first lead role on television came in 2015, playing the role of Betty DiMello in Masters of Sex for four seasons. She’s also had recurring roles in television shows including Younger, Unbelievable, Evil and The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.