Idina Menzel Biography
Review The Artist (24)
I was born in New York City to Stuart and Helene Mentzel (no that's not a spelling mistake). I took out the t because everyone always pronounces it wrong. Now it's like Menzelle - like French, but not.
We moved from Queens to New Jersey but by the 2nd grade we settled in Woodbury, Long Island, where I lived until I went to NYU. I always knew I wanted to sing. I was 5 and in summer camp where we were singing "Cat's in the Cradle" and I was somehow harmonizing by accident; all of the counselors made a big deal. Later I brought down the house in this talent show where I performed "The Way We Were" with the biggest Long Island accent you've ever heard (I'm still made fun of today for that).
Coincidentally, in the 5th grade I was Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz" and Mabel in "The Pirates of Penzance" - the latter was pretty challenging for elementary school. I went to a voice teacher when I was 8 and I sang some songs from "Annie" and she said I was screaming so much that she didn't want me to hurt myself, so she took me on.
By the time I got to Syosset High School, I was cast as 60-year old nettie in "Carousel"; our director felt that my voice sounded the most mature. At that time, I was studying classically with Mr. Arnold but found myself wanting to listen to and imitate R&B singers: Aretha, Chaka Kahn, Etta James and the list goes on.
Instead of working at the local delicatessen, I auditioned for a wedding band, lied about my age and got hired as the lead singer. I had to buy a black cocktail dress and learn everything from jazz to rock to motown. I started writing my own songs and when I got to NYU, I focused less on class and more on trying to get a record deal and keep my own band together which isn't a very easy thing to do when you have very little money and no name. Then on a whim, I auditioned for a show called "Rent" which I thought would fit perfectly into my calendar being that January and February are slow months for weddings. But that year, December 1995 New Year's Eve was my final wedding gig at the Four Seasons in Philly.
"Rent" went to Broadway and I had a new, wonderful family. The show allowed me the opportunity to record my own album and tour with it. I played at Lillith Fair, started working on a second album, got dropped by my record label, cried a lot and then went right back to the theater where I have always felt so comfortable. I was in a fabulous show called "The Wild Party," by Andrew Lippa and got to be on stage with my (now) husband whom, as some of you may know, I met in "Rent."
Since then I 've been trying to go wherever the water is warm; whether it be music or theater or film, I'm just trying to do what I love. One day I heard about a new musical based on the book "Wicked", so I put on green lipstick and smokey black eye shadow and went to audition for the green girl. I got the project and I've been working on it ever since (almost 3 years). And now I 'm living in one of the sweetest times of my life. Just the sweetest.
Thanks for caring. xoxo, Idina.
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thank you | Reviewer: Ariana | 1/17/13
You really are my idol. I love you so much. Thank you so much for your donation to SOTA (School of the Arts)I saw your concert in rochester with my friend and we loved it. I am a drama major at School of the Arts. You truely inspire me. <3
I Love You so Much | Reviewer: Hannah K. | 12/24/12
I just want to say that you are the best actress, singer, mom, wife, and anything else. You are my role model and my hero. No one will ever be better than you. Idina you are amazing, I want to be just like you. You have such a great passion for music, your family and fans, and life itself. Keep making me proud and I hope to someday meet you.
I love you! | Reviewer: Laney | 11/11/12
I want to be you when I grow up! My friends think I'm a bit strange for that, but I don't mind. I love your music. Defying gravity is like my theme song. It's been on replay on my iPod for years now. We sing it in showchoir and my friends tease me about how into it I am. Thanks for being such an amazing role model.
6th grade, Illinois
hello | Reviewer: Maria | 10/5/12
Idina, you're like my number three idol. I'm sorry but i've always had Gwen Stefani and Jennifer Lopez as my top two. I've always had a thing for singing and at the age of 13, i decided i wanted to sing and dance & be on Broadway. I've always been quite the actor and iam EXTREMELY dramatic. lol I've seen so many videos on youtube of you and you're just amazing! I can honestly say you're an inspiration to me. I'mtrying so hard to get onto broadway...and i know it's gonna be hard but im willing to guve it my all and just go for it. :) Everytime i feel like giving up cuz it "may" be too difficult, i just watch RENT, and i'm back onmy grind....dancing, singing, acting...I've done talent shows, mini school concerts, musical theater in hish school and little by little, i'm getting there. I am 19 years old now and i still have this dream. I cannot even tell someone how much i want this so bad... but i really do. i keep you and the journey of getting there in my mind all the time and i always tell myself, "i can do it! Just like Idina!" :)but i just want to say thank you so much! i love you! xoxo
Thank you!!! | Reviewer: Jessica | 4/16/12
Wow that will totally help me out you rock! I have always wanted to be an actress but my dad would never allow it he says I am to young :(. But I will keep trying thank you for being my idol!
XOXOXOXO :) LOL I <3 U
I LOVE YOU! | Reviewer: Lilly | 4/16/12
Hey I went to see wicked and you could not preform I was so sad! And then I watched every Glee episode with you on it Those I loved!!!!!! I just love you you rock!!!!!!!!
p.s. I loooooooooooved no good deed I sing it like all the time lol!
You. Are. Amazing. | Reviewer: Anonymous | 2/9/12
You are the best inspiration I could possibly have. Ever since I saw Rent I've been hoping that I would be in a production of it someday. When I first heard you singing "Defying Gravity", my ambitions stretched so much farther, and the first time I saw you on glee, I went searching for my dream college. You probably won't ever read this, but thank you, Idina. You changed my life.
You are my inspiration | Reviewer: Angela | 12/17/10
You were FANTASTIC in Wicked!!!!!!! I love you and all the shows you've been in. Whenever I get bad news (like when I found out my grandmother had dementia) I lock myself in my room cry and sing along to idina's voice. Thankyou Idina for being such a comfort in those really difficult times of my life.
Idina is my number 1 idol... Thankyou for everything
You're my idol! | Reviewer: Rachel | 8/2/10
Ever sinceI was little I've wanted to be a singer. I've joined school and church choirs and all of my instructors beg me to do solos. It's my dream to make it to Broadway, but my parents always tell me that I should find something useful to do with my life and wasting my time. Now whenever they say that I listen to one of you're songs and tell myself that I CAN do it no matter what they say. You're my inspiration and my confidence. I want to be just like you.
hi there | Reviewer: amy stone | 8/8/10
hi i dont no if Idina will read this i no she doesnt like reading stuff on the internet but on the offchance thats she will see it I just wonna say you make life seem so beautiful and inspierd me to start taking the singing lesons i always wonted to take but was to afrad to do because of you and your songs with the most memrabal words i have ever herd because they mean so much have changed my life forever i am now making you a gift and will be sending it as soon as it is finished hope you like xoxox thanx for listening to my rambaling xoxox
I want to be like you when I grow up. | Reviewer: Sam | 2/25/10
My dream has always been to be oon Broadway, but I don't think I'd make it. You are proof, though that anything is possible and I will keep trying my hardest. Thank you for bing an inspiration. -Sam-
Idina Menzel is my hero. | Reviewer: Lauren | 9/14/09
Idina Menzel is my hero. She has always worked so hard for what she wants and never gives up. I saw the play Wicked when she preformed in it, and fell in love with her, and her voice. She has an amazing voice and I'm proud to say she is my hero.
OMG!!!! | Reviewer: Julia | 4/26/09
You are my idol!!!! I went to a Mets game yesterday and I saw a girl who looked exactly like you and I asked her if she was you and then she said no and moved to a different seat. But i don't even care. i want to be just like you when I grow up.
You are my role model | Reviewer: Avery(I AM A BROADWAY FREAK) | 3/5/09
Before I ever heard songs from wicked, I wasnt interested in broadway. I heard popular,and what is this feeling and now i will never be the same. I fell inlove with Idinas Voice. I LOVE IDINA MENZEL!!!! I plan to become a broadway singer when I grow older.
ahh | Reviewer: diego | 2/25/09
omg i love u i went to see wicked i went crazy so i really love u i have the wicked ticket on my door the playbills a folder with wicked stuff the book and so i sing defying gravity i love it i love no one mourms the wicked i love u u are the best i dont have the soundtrack for wicked cause it is expensive n i am 11 and have no money my bday is april 30 1997 so well g2g wicked was the best o n sorry to here about ur ribs that got hert so bye u da bomb lolzz
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