TELLY LEUNG was born and raised in New York City. He grew up in a traditional Chinese home in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. He is a proud alumni of New York’s prestigious math & science specialized high school, Stuyvesant High School. After Stuyvesant, Telly was admitted to Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama (CMU), where he received most of his formal training in acting, singing, and dance.
It was also at CMU that Telly met fellow CMU-alum and KINKY BOOTS Tony-Award Winner, Billy Porter, who returned to his alma mater to direct the main stage production of Sondheim’s COMPANY. After casting Telly as Bobby in “Company”, Porter made a phone call to his colleagues who were involved in the upcoming Broadway revival of FLOWER DRUM SONG and landed Telly an audition. In the fall of 2002, Telly made his Broadway debut in the revival of ‘Flower Drum Song”, starring Lea Salonga, as a member of the ensemble and an understudy for Wang Ta.
What a season to be in Broadway!
After playing Bobby in Sondheim’s COMPANY in college, Telly would later get the opportunity to work with the legendary Stephen Sondheim in Roundabout’s Broadway revival of PACIFIC OVERTURES in 2005. After PACIFIC OVERTURES, Telly originated the role of Boq in the Chicago company of WICKED, collaborating with fellow CMU-alum, Stephen Schwartz. Other Broadway credits include the final company of RENT – where he also got to make his film debut in Radical Media / Sony’s RENT: FILMED LIVE ON BROADWAY, which is available on DVD and Blue Ray.
After RENT ended its Broadway run, Telly went on an international tour with original RENT stars Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp in RENT: THE BROADWAY TOUR. He would later reprise the role of Angel in RENT at the Hollywood Bowl, directed by Neil Patrick Harris and starring Vanessa Hudgens, Aaron Tveit, Skylar Astin, & Wayne Brady. In 2011, Telly would get another opportunity to collaborate with composer Stephen Schwartz in the Broadway revival of GODSPELL at the Circle in the Square Theater.
Regionally, he starred alongside George Takei & Lea Salonga in the world premiere of the Broadway-bound musical Allegiance at the Old Globe Theatre. Regionally, he has also appeared at Pittsburgh CLO, the MUNY, and Philadelphia Theater Company. In concert, he has performed to sold-out houses all over the country, at Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, The Hollywood Bowl, The Magic Castle, San Francisco’s Feinstein’s At The Nikko Hotel, London’s Hippodrome Casino, NYC’s 54 Below, Tokyo’s La Donna, and San Diego’s Diversionary Theater.
His first solo CD “I’ll Cover You” is available on The Yellow Sound Label. He is also the producer of the musical short film, GRIND, starring Rent‘s Anthony Rapp (grindshortfilm.com). He holds a BFA in Drama from Carnegie Mellon University. For more information on Telly, check out tellyleung.com
Get updates from the company of Allegiance on Broadway.