Born in Teaneck, New Jersey, Donnelly is best known as Jan, one of the Pink Ladies from the film version of Grease, a role she got at the age of 30. Donnelly is an acting coach who lives in La Canada, California, with her husband Stephen Foreman, a noted novelist, and two children, Sevi and Madden Rose. Five years before playing Jan in the Grease movie, she played Jan in the play on Broadway. Soon after, she quit the acting business for a while and lost her contract. Later, she was in the United States premiere of The Rocky Horror Show starring as Magenta and the Usherette. She appeared on stage at the Roxy theatre in Los Angeles with Tim Curry and Meat Loaf in 1974, when the show opened. She is featured on the original Roxy cast recording in her role, singing the opening song Science Fiction/Double Feature. She went with most of the Roxy cast to reprise her roles on Broadway in 1975. Several years later she was called to read for Grease. Also, during her stage career, she appeared in a musical version of "Tarzan" in which Barry Bostwick was originally cast as "Tarzan". Before the opening, Barry Bostwick was let go and Jamie, as "Jane" starred with the composer/writer as "Tarzan". Donnelly has focused on her career as an acting coach. She has coached such actors as Anthony Azizi from TV series, Commander In Chief & Threat Matrix and Caitlin Watts of Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood and the short-lived TV series remake of Family Affair which featured her Rocky Horror co-star, Tim Curry. Jamie Donnelly still acts in guest roles (including a couple of episodes of "Family Affair") and in 2008 began making appearances at "Rocky Horror" conventions. She has been at quite a few "Grease" conventions through the years, as well.
- Children, Sevi (b.1988) and Madden Rose (b.1980)
- As an acting coach, Jamie coached actress Caitlin Wachs (of my dog skip and divine secrets of the ya-ya sisterhood).