Stargazing, Free-thinking, Dessert-loving Woman with a Wry Wit and a Sideways Smirk.
Born in the Silicon Valley to a flight attendant and an ironworker, Chelese Belmont grew up in Gilroy, CA, where she danced competitively and performed in children’s musical theatre. She graduated with honors from UC Berkeley a year early, and since she promised her mother that she would get a degree in something other than acting, she chose a major with A TON of job security... history. BUT, she also took classes through the Theatre Department, while concurrently studying acting and audition technique in the Professional Studio Program at The American Conservatory Theatre (ACT) in San Francisco.
During and after her years at Berkeley, she began working on student and independent films in the Bay Area, until she was accepted into graduate school in New York City and completed a three-year Masters of Fine Arts program in Acting at the Actors Studio Drama School. In that time, she became a protegee of Elizabeth Kemp (coach to Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, & Hugh Jackman), who had a significant influence on her study of the craft of acting.
Chelese ended her three years at The Actors Studio with an Off-Broadway repertory season, playing Allison in John Osborne’s “Look Back in Anger" and originating a role in a new play, "Dream Wedding!" On her summer breaks during graduate school, she continued to shoot feature films, then moved to Los Angeles to continue pursuing her film career. She has been busy with roles in theatre, film, television, voiceover, and commercials ever since.
She has also moved into writing, producing, and directing. With her production company, Beleeve Entertainment, she adapted and directed the short, "The Red Haired Lady," which played festivals in the US and Europe. She also directed the LGBT short, "Holiday Help Desk," and her screenplays have placed in numerous screenwriting competitions. "Penumbra," a film that she produced and starred in, is on digital platforms, as are the shorts, "The Visit," "Speed Date," "The Obituarist" and "Chromo46." She also just wrote season 1 of a twelve-episode digital series, "Somewhere, Sometime," that is in development, and she is a Stowe Story Labs New Mexico New Voices Fellow with her dramatic narrative feature script, "The Sun Rises on Another Day."
Chelese is currently splitting time between Los Angeles and Albuquerque and actively working in both markets.
• Certified in Defensive Hand Gun training from Front Sight Firearms Training Institute.
• The Cover Model for the hardcover edition of the teen novel Vampire Kisses 5: Kissing Coffins.
• A producer, writer, director, dancer, poet, photographer, notoriously terrible painter.
She Has Studied:
• Belly Dancing and West African Dance to shake up her classical dance training.
• Tae Kwan Do- She was a Red Belt, and still occasionally practices martial arts.
• British Literature and Culture in London for a summer while in college.
• Astronomy - She went to Space Camp in the 4th grade and would go again in a heartbeat.
• Travel, Whiskey, Sushi, Cupcakes, Banter.
When Not Acting, She's:
Doing yoga, writing, taking photos, baking, white water rafting, traveling, hiking, dancing, reading plays and poetry, watching and/or making movies.
Mentor: Elizabeth Kemp
Cate Blanchett, Viola Davis, Toni Collette
Cherry Jones, Michelle Pfeiffer, Jessica Chastain,
Vivien Leigh, Katharine Hepburn.
Acting AND Filmmaking Inspirations:
Issa Rae, Brit Marling, Regina King.