Photograph of Vanessa Williams

Photo credit: Gilles Toucas

Vanessa Williams

Vanessa Williams is one of the most respected and multi-faceted performers in the entertainment industry today. 

Having sold millions of records worldwide, Vanessa has also achieved numerous #1 and Top 10 hits on various Billboard Album and Singles charts: Pop, Dance, R&B, Adult Contemporary, Holiday, Latin, Gospel and Jazz. 

Her critically acclaimed work in film, television, recordings and the Broadway stage has been recognized by every major industry award affiliate including 4 Emmy nominations, 11 Grammy nominations, a Tony nomination, 3 SAG award nominations, 7 NAACP Image Awards and 3 Satellite Awards. Her platinum single "Colors of the Wind," from  Disney’s Pocahontas, won the Oscar, GRAMMY® and Golden Globe for Best Original Song. 

A graduate of Syracuse University, Vanessa is a strong advocate for equal rights, especially concerning the gay community and minorities. She was honored with the Human Rights Campaign “Ally for Equality” Award for her humanitarian contributions. Vanessa also achieved a career pinnacle with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2007. Vanessa’s autobiography, You Have No Idea, co-written with her mother Helen Williams, was a New York Times Best Seller in 2012.

In 2020, Vanessa released Bubble Kissesher first picture book for children, which tells the story of a young girl with the ability to transform into a mermaid. This effervescent, lively tale is based on a song which is also available with the book and as a download. 

Bubble Kisses was honored with The American Book Fest Award, The National Indie Excellence Award and The International Book Award in the Category of Best Children’s Picture Book – Hardcover Fiction.

Vanessa’s recent Broadway credits include starring in the new play POTUS – featuring an all-female cast, co-starring with Cicely Tyson in The Trip to Bountiful, (the #1 play of the 2013 season), After Midnight (2014), and a special limited engagement in Hey, Look Me Over at New York City Center in 2018. Vanessa also recently starred in the revival of City of Angels on The West End in London and special performance of Stephen Sondheim’s Anyone Can Whistle at Carnegie Hall.

In 2021, Vanessa joined the star-studded panel of judges for the new RuPaul series, Queen Of The Universe, along with Michelle Visage, Trixie Mattel and Leona Lewis.  The show is hosted by Graham Norton and airs on ViacomCBS.

Vanessa is the mother of four - Melanie, Jillian, Devin and Sasha. Her charitable endeavors are many and varied, embracing and supporting such organizations as Black Theatre United, The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, Special Olympics, Broadway Cares-Equity Fights AIDS and several others.

Vanessa is one of the world’s most accomplished concert artists, appearing regularly with the most prestigious symphony orchestras in the world, including the National Symphony Orchestra at The Kennedy Center.