Before that, she made her Broadway debut starring in William Finn’s new musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, where she originated the role of Olive Ostrovsky, for which she earned a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Musical.
She also originated the role of Clara Johnson in the pre-Broadway world premiere of the Craig Lucas/Adam Guettel musical The Light in the Piazza at Seattle's Intiman Theatre and Chicago's Goodman Theatre.
She has performed off-Broadway in Kindertransport, Little Fish and Summer of ’42. Some regional credits include Johanna in Sweeney Todd at the Kennedy Center Sondheim Celebration, along with productions at the Goodman Theatre, Palo Alto’s Theatreworks and Sundance Theatre Lab. She has sung in concert at the Lincoln Center American Songbook Series and at the Michigan Theatre with Audra McDonald. She appeared in Playwrights Horizons production of the new musical Saved!, with music and lyrics by Michael Friedman and a book by John Dempsey and Rinne Groff.
She is a graduate of the University of Michigan's musical theatre performance program. Celia is one of three children, all of whom are involved in the performing arts. Her brother, Andrew Keenan-Bolger, also graduated from the University of Michigan with a BFA in musical theatre in 2007. Already a Broadway veteran, Andrew joined the national touring company of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee in the Fall of 2007. Her sister, Maggie Keenan-Bolger, who wrote the noted play From the Inside, Out, studied musical theatre at Oberlin College and graduated in 2006.