- 5' 3"
- May 23, 1976
- Philadelphia, PA, USA
- Miss April 1997
About Kelly Marie Monaco
Actress Kelly Monaco has been at the touchstone of popular culture in television for decades, but her first appearance in the national spotlight was actually away from the small screen. After submitting her pictures to Playboy at the age of 20, the Philly native landed Playmate of the Month in April 1997. At the time Monaco told Playboy, "I've always wanted to be a star. Growing up, I wanted to be an actress." The model and former lifeguard soon made good on her dream by appearing on the international hit Baywatch from 1997-1998 as an extra and body double to fellow playmate Carmen Electra (who reportedly could not swim).
Monaco quickly proved she had the acting chops to match the beach body by landing a recurring role on the soap opera Port Charles--one that garnered an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2003. In her next TV role, on the legendary General Hospital--one of the longest-running soap operas in history--Monaco caught the eye of National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences members yet again; she was nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series three years later.
Just as the popularity of soap operas were starting to wane in popular culture, Monaco made a career move that put her on the cusp of another TV wave: in the genres of reality and talent competition TV. She starred in and won the first season of talent juggernaut Dancing with the Stars despite being ranked as the lowest-scoring contestant after the first episode. Monaco also starred in the reality series Dirty Soap for E! in 2011, produced by fellow soap vet Kelly Ripa. Monaco returned as a contestant to Dancing with the Stars in 2012 as part of the series’ All Stars competition.
Monaco also took her dancing talents to Las Vegas, performing in the burlesque production of Peepshow at Planet Hollywood in 2009, while still continuing as detective Sam McCall (née Sam Morgan) on General Hospital--a show in which she has appeared in more than 1,200 episodes.
Monaco has shined as a television favorite for decades and has long reigned as a captivating cover girl. In addition to appearing in several Playboy special editions in the 1990s, Monaco’s December 2009 Maxim cover was named the sexiest of the decade by the magazine. When it comes to hear off-camera endeavors, Monaco has taken a less glamorous but significantly meaningful path. She has worked as a children’s activist (traveling to Nairobi, Kenya to help local children and raise awareness about starvation and global poverty with Feed The Children), and she is known to grow her own organic veggies from her Los Angeles home.