Jenn Gambatese is a versatile and accomplished actress, singer, teacher, and writer who has made her mark on the Broadway stage and beyond. Her journey began in Cleveland, Ohio, where her passion for theater ignited at an early age. She honed her skills at New York University, double majoring in Drama and Sociology, and graduated magna cum laude.
Gambatese's Broadway debut came in the 1998 revival of Footloose, where she played the role of Urleen and understudied the lead actress. This initial success paved the way for her involvement in the original Broadway production of Hairspray, a musical that would become a defining moment in her career.
From 2002 to 2009, Gambatese captivated audiences as the lovable and endearing Penny Pingleton in Hairspray. Her portrayal of the character's kindness, loyalty, and unwavering support for her friends resonated deeply with audiences, making Penny a fan favorite. Gambatese's performance was praised for its authenticity, warmth, and comedic timing, further cementing her status as a rising star on Broadway.
Beyond her Broadway roles, Gambatese has also performed in numerous off-Broadway productions, including The Thing About Men, The Fantasticks, and A Little Night Music. She has also demonstrated her versatility as a concert performer, singing with renowned orchestras such as the Atlanta Symphony, West Michigan Symphony, and Long Island Philharmonic.