Sexy starlet Kelly Monaco is steaming up the screen on daytime soap operas, with her recurring role on ABC television’s General Hospital. What many fans of the show may not know, or may be tuning in to see, is the Kelly Monaco who is the former Playboy Playmate and snappy dancer who won the “Dancing with the Stars” competition in 2005.
Kelly Monaco was born in Philadelphia, 1976, one of five daughters. She attended the west side St. Joachim’s Roman Catholic school in her early years, before her family moved to the Poconos. She was involved in a variety of sports while growing up, from soccer to swimming to track, and worked as a lifeguard.
She attended acting classes at a local community college, getting stray modeling and acting jobs, until her discovery by Playboy. Well, discovery may be better stated as she led them to herself, since at the age of 20 she had sent the magazine nude photos of herself that had convinced the magazine she deserved a feature centerfold.
Kelly Monaco started her career in show business at the tender age of 21, with he bi-continental appearances in Playboy’s flagship United States edition in April 1997 and their popular (but tame by European standards) German edition of the magazine.
In 1998, the enterprising Kelly Monaco, whose website says she is a fierce competitor, took the plunge into the shark-filled waters and moved to Los Angeles, where actors and models either rise to the top, or are eaten by the system.
She landed a small part on Baywatch for the 1998-1999 seasons. Unlike many of her other Playmate sisters, Kelly Monaco had bigger plans for her acting career than being typecast as a bimbo with a bod. During that same time she landed bit roles in two films – Idle Hands with a credited role, as a pole dancing stripper in the screwball comedy BASEketball, and a small part in the film Mumford. She was also picked up by the William Morris agency.
Kelly rose into the spotlight in 1999, when she landed a spot on the General Hospital spin-off soap opera Port Charles, a run that lasted for five season – but in two different roles. In 2003 she was nominated for a daytime Emmy as best supporting actress for her portrayal of Tess Ramsay, and again got an Emmy nomination in 2006, but this time for best actress, for her portrayal of Samantha “Sam” McCall, a conniving con-woman.
Where next for the beautiful and talented Kelly Monaco? At the age of 31, and attention focused on her career (she remains single, although she says she has dated the same man for 15 years), only her agent, and Kelly, know for sure.