Kissy Simmons is an American actress. "Kissy" is short for Kissimmee, the Floridian city near Orlando about 80 miles from Floral City where she was born. She is best known for playing Nala in the Broadway production of The Lion King and as of 2011 is reprising the role in the Las Vegas production at Mandalay Bay beginning May 5, 2009.
Simmons was state high-jump champion at Citrus High School in Florida, and attended the University of South Florida on a full track scholarship. She received a BA in speech communications before going on to a successful modeling and theatre career in the Tampa Bay area. Professional credits include Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Narrator), Little Shop of Horrors (Ronnette) and Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris.
In April 2008, Simmons made her Carnegie Hall debut performing at the New York Pops 25th Annual Spring Gala. Then in May 2008, along with Ashley Brown and Sierra Boggess, she performed at The New York Pops 25th Birthday Gala.
Along with ten other select members of the current Lion King cast, Simmons performed September 15, 2008 at The White House for a State Dinner. The invitation came personally from The First Lady Laura Bush, who saw the show during its Kennedy Center engagement.
- "reprint from The Westside Gazette of December 18, 2002, "Floral City native, Kissy Simmons is Nala in Disney's Lion King". highbeam.com website. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "Behind the Scenes: Backstage at The Lion King with Kissy Simmons". by Paul Wontorek. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "Lion King's Kissy Simmons, TV Pioneers, Barbara Returns, Chita's Back, Schmidt and Jones' Celebration Revived, Holiday Fare, More". by Ellis Nassour. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "Sesma, White, Williams, Zama and Simmons Cast in Las Vegas Lion King". by Andrew Gans. Archived from the original on 2009-03-15. Retrieved 2009-03-11.
- "Kissy Simmons bio". broadway.com website. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "Kissy Simmons biography". playbill.com website. Archived from the original on 2008-06-05. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "Kissy Simmons Hits Home". tampabayillustrated.com archives. Retrieved 2008-09-27.[dead link]
- "reprint from The Westside Gazette of December 18, 2002, Disney's Leading Ladies Took On Carnegie Hall 4/28". broadwayworld.com website. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "Photo Coverage: The New York Pops 25th. Birthday Gala". broadwayworld.com website. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "September 11, 2008, Cast of 'The Lion King' To Perform at White House State Dinner". broadwayworld.com website. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
- "September 16, 2008, Photo Flash: THE LION KING Visits the White House". broadwayworld.com website. Retrieved 2008-09-27.