R. Kelly’s ex-wife planning to teach ‘art of seduction’ at new dance studio
BY A.JAY WAGNER Correspondent May 9, 2011 10:32PM
Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM
“Hooker Heels” is one dance workout Andrea Kelly is planning to use in teaching her students the art of seduction.
The name she’s established for herself as a choreographer is what Kelly’s going to use to draw clients to a fitness workout and pole dancing studio set to open this week in Country Club Hills.
“I feel like just opening the doors means it’s already a success,” Kelly said. “You’ve got to follow that gut feeling and ignore naysayers. I think we did that, and I think it was an accomplishment.”
The ex-wife of rhythm and blues star R. Kelly, Andrea, who for years choreographed R. Kelly’s stage shows, videos and more, recently launched a burlesque show, “Le Pink Kitty Cabaret,” in Atlanta. After the finishing kicks have come demands for instruction.
“Everywhere we’d perform, there’d be requests afterwards for classes,” she said, “and I figured now is the time.”
The result is Le Pink Kitty, which is set to debut Friday at 4071 W. 183rd St. in Country Club Hills. A “Girls Night Out” event, including a free class, starts at 7 p.m.
For Kelly, 37, of Frankfort, it’ll be the culmination of a lot of hard work.
Andrea Kelly was auditioning as a dancer when she met R. Kelly, and she ended up being the Grammy Award winner’s primary choreographer, dancing and choreographing for his many tour performances, music videos, award shows and global appearances.
Andrea and R. Kelly married in 1996. In 2002, R. Kelly was charged with 14 counts of child pornography for allegedly videotaping himself having sex with his underage goddaughter. He was acquitted on all counts by a Cook County jury in 2008.
The Kellys were divorced in 2006. Together they have three children, JoAnn, 13; Jaya, 10; and Robert Jr., 8.
Andrea Kelly can’t talk about the case, in part because of the divorce agreement.
Andrea Kelly said she was born and raised in Chicago’s Douglas community. She said she holds a free class each summer for disadvantaged youth with hopes of “planting seeds of inspiration” with each child. She stressed the importance of seeing beyond the boundaries of a rough neighborhood and understanding the opportunities available.
“I was born in Lawless Gardens,” she said. “I’ve lived amongst the buildings and crackheads, and I know lots of folks see things in black and white. But I was exposed to the color outside the ‘hood,’ and I hope to spark that for others.”
Andrea and R. Kelly lived in Olympia Fields while they were married. She lived near Elmhurst for a couple of years before moving to Frankfort in 2007.
Kelly cited the proximity to the city and the area’s friendly nature as reasons to live and work in the Southland.
“I love it down here,” she said. “It’s got a bit of a country feel with all the amenities of the city.”
Andrea Kelly’s website is andreakellyis.com. Her Twitter handle is lepinkkitty.