Leslie Andrea Williams was born in Newport News, Virginia and was raised Raleigh, North Carolina. After studying dance in her hometown, she took her training to the next level moving almost two hours away from home to train in the High School Division at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Leslie's training included attending many dance summer intensives on scholarship, including the Boston Ballet School, The Pacific Northwest Ballet School, Carolina Ballet, The Movement Invention Project, and The Broadway Theatre Project. Leslie moved on to study at the prestigious Juilliard School, and graduated in May of 2015 with a BFA in Dance. While at Juilliard, Leslie performed for numerous choreographers such as Paul Taylor, Lar Lubovitch, Larry Keigwin, Darrell Grand Moultrie, Austin McCormick, and Monica Bill Barnes. In her senior year, she had the honor of dancing the leading role of She of the Ground in the revival of Martha Graham’s Dark Meadow. Also in her senior year, she performed "The Trumpet Solo" from Bob Fosse's Dancin, staged by Deb McWaters. Leslie has been involved in many dance projects in New York City. She performed a new work choreographed by UNCSA alum Andrew Harper at Lincoln Center, was a guest artist for Gentry George’s Zest Collective, and danced/assisted with Buglisi Dance Theatre. Leslie also is a choreographer. While performing as a featured solo artist/choreographer with the BalaSole Dance Company in summer 2013, she was described in an Oberon's Grove review as "a girl who dances in her own sphere." Leslie also has a love for "on-screen dancing" and has been featured in music videos and dance films by different artists, including Blood Orange, Braxton Cook, Bryant Norman, Martin Barshai, Sam Brown, and Lorens Chuno. Leslie also is a video-editor, creating site-specific dance films around New York City.
Leslie is now dancing with The Martha Graham Dance Company in New York City. Since her first season began in July 2015, she toured in all over the world in places such as Italy, Germany, China, Cuba, Haiti, and Spain. She has had the honor of performing featured Graham roles such as The Chorus woman in Cave of the Heart, The Woman in White in Diversion of Angels, The Pioneering Woman in Appalachian Spring, and The Leader of Steps in the Street in Chronicle. She has also had new works created on her by choreographers Pontus Lidberg, Marie Chouinard, Annie B Parson, and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. Her dancing with the company has been described in the NY Times as "unmannered and open." Leslie intends to spend a lifetime performing on and off the stage in an array of creative outlets.