Laura Benanti is a Tony award winning actress and singer probably best known for her roles in “Nurse Jackie,” “The Sound of Music Live!” and “Nashville.” She’s also quite active and funny on Twitter.
Laura Benanti described herself on Twitter as “Human Lady. Also I’m on Nashville now. I said Nashville. Yeah you heard me.”
Her nickname is La-La, and she is a mix of Yugoslavian, German, Irish and Native American ancestry. Even though her parents were performers, they didn’t let her audition for any professional theatre. “I think they wanted me to have a normal childhood. Also, I grew really quickly and I think that they understood that I was twelve but looked seventeen.”
Laura Benanti lived in New York until she was three and then her family moved to New Jersey, where she grew up. Growing up, she described herself as very serious and an ugly duckling. She was also interested in musical theatre, which set her apart from her peers. “It’s hard…I had so many nights of crying and being sad, and my mom hugging me and saying, ‘It’s OK. You’re special. You’re not weird.”
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Laura Benanti attended Kinnelon High School and New York University. She made her Broadway debut when she was 18 in “The Sound of Music,” playing one of the nuns. She later took over the leading role of Maria. Other Broadway credits followed, including parts in “Into the Woods” and “Gypsy.”
Her other roles include TV parts in “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” “Royal Pains” and “The Playboy Club,” among many others.
She said, “In life I am not a sexy person. I am a nerdy, gawky person. It’s really true. My friends would attest that I am much nerdier than anyone would ever imagine. And more than nerdy, I’m goofy.”
Laura Benanti has an album available on iTunes and Amazon entitled “In Constant Search of the Right Kind of Attention.” She said, “The title is just silly…I used to think that the right kind of attention was being a famous person. But it’s shifted as I’ve gotten older to people seeing you for what you are, not creating a persona that is too far away from the essence of who I am.”
She added, “I see the world through the lens of humor…there’s always a wink to everything that I do. I’m a clown.”
Laura Benanti resides in New York City and is currently single.