Desi Oakley

Desi Oakley originated the role of Jenna Hunterson on the First National Tour of Waitress the Musical. She took a break from the tour, to star in Chicago on Broadway, before returning to complete the tour in Toronto in summer 2019.

She also made her West End debut, playing Jenna for the week commencing 13 January 2020, due to the illness of Lucie JonesSarah O’Connor and Olivia Moore, which resulted in the cancellation of two performances on Saturday 11 January 2020.

On playing Jenna, Desi said: “One of the hardest challenges while on the road has been maintaining my sense of self and separating the character from myself. Jenna is so relatable and has an accent that is how a lot of my family talks. She almost comes naturally to me, and I’ve grown to love her. So I FaceTime my friends, I read my book, I do yoga, I try to find something fun in each city. It’s about playing Desi and remembering my true identity so Jenna can thrive onstage.”

Desi left the tour to play Roxie Hart in Chicago on Broadway, and was replaced by Christine Dwyer in September 2018. She released an original album, entitled “Repeat,” in 2019, and previously portrayed Antonia on “Gotham.”

Selected Previous Credits

Broadway

  • Annie
  • Wicked

Off-Broadway

  • Evita, Tour
  • Prince of Egypt, New York Theatre
  • Chasing The Song, New York Theatre
  • Show Boat, New York Theatre

Regional

  • Shrek: The Musical, Connecticut Repertory Theatre
  • Girlstar, Signature Theatre
  • The Little Mermaid, Music Theatre of Wichita
NameDesi Oakley
Born12 June 1989
FromWichita, Kansas
TrainedUniversity of Michigan
RoleJenna Hunterson First National Tour
Jenna Hunterson West End