Kerry Jane Townsend (born 6 May 1979), better known by her maiden name Kerry Ellis, is an English actress and singer who is best known for her work in musical theatre and subsequent crossover into music. Born and raised in Suffolk, Ellis began performing at an early age before attending Laine Theatre Arts from the age of 16.
Ellis made her first professional stage appearance in 1998 and went on to make her West End debut in the 2001 revival of My Fair Lady as Martine McCutcheon's understudy in the role of Eliza Doolittle. After meeting Queen guitarist Brian May in 2002, she landed the role of Meat in the original London cast of We Will Rock You and has subsequently played lead roles in West End musicals Les Misérables, Wicked (which also took her to Broadway) and Oliver! as well as appearing in national tours and concert productions of musicals like Miss Saigon, Chess, The War of the Worlds and RENT. Ellis, who has received several awards and nominations for her performances, has fast become recognised as the First Lady of West End musicals. She has also worked sporadically in film and television.