|Born:||May 30, 1971|
|Years Active:||1995 - present|
Idina Kim Mentzel (she changed the spelling to "Menzel" because people always pronounced the "t" in "Mentzel") (born May 30, 1971) is an American actress, singer and songwriter. She plays the role of Shelby Corcoran on the FOX TV show, Glee. She is best known for originating the role of Elphaba in the hit Broadway musical Wicked (for which she won a Tony Award) along with fellow Glee guest star Kristen Chenoweth as the original Glinda (also known as Galinda). Idina also played the role of Maureen in both the 1996 original Broadway production and 2005 movie musical Rent. Additional theatre credits include the role of Amneris in Elton John's Aida and Kate in the 2000 Off-Broadway production of Lippa's The Wild Party.
Menzel was born in Queens, New York. She is married to actor Taye Diggs, and together they have a son named Walker Nathaniel Diggs. Diggs and Menzel met during the original Broadway production of Rent, in which Diggs played Benny, the land-lord.
Idina Kim Menzel was born to Helene and Stuart Menzel. She was raised Jewish. She lived in Marlboro Township, New Jersey up until 1st grade, and lived in Syosset, New York. When she was 15 years old, she began working as a bar mitzvah and wedding singer. Her parents divorced before this. She continued her job up until college, where she went Tisch School of Arts at New York University. After graduating college, she successfully pursued her dream of being an actress on Broadway.
Menzel appears in twelve episodes on Glee, so far, as a fictional character, Shelby Corcoran. Shelby is the coach of Vocal Adrenaline in Season One, and Rachel Berry’s mother, as well as the adopted mother of Quinn's baby Beth. She was cast after many fans noted how much resemblance there was between Idina and Lea Michele. As for her time on Glee she also got a bit naughty with the opposing showchoirs director Will Schuester as she seems very into him in the end. Menzel returned to Glee for Season 3 for 10-12 episodes. She made her comeback appearence in I Am Unicorn, along with her adoptive on-screen daughter, Beth.
- Defying Gravity (Wicked with Kristin Chenoweth) sung by Rachel and Kurt (Wheels)
- Take Me or Leave Me (Rent with Fredi Walker) sung by Rachel and Mercedes (Comeback)
- For Good (Wicked with Kristin Chenoweth) sung by Rachel and Kurt (New York)
- She is a mezzo-soprano and a belter.
- All of her parts in her covered songs are sung by Lea Michele who plays her characters biological daugher.
- Her idol is Barbra Streisand.
- She's the original Elphaba (Wicked) and Maureen (RENT).
- She is widely known for her wide vocal range and belting techniques.
- Before she was on Broadway, she was a wedding and bar mitzvah singer.
- She's Jewish.
- She's the original singer of For Good (along with Kristin Chenoweth) and Take Me or Leave Me.
- She has a Yorkshire Terrier and 2 "Jazz" Cats.
- She has a son named Walker.
- Prior to winning the Tony for her performance as Elphaba in Wicked, she had already been nominated for her performance as Maureen, in RENT.
- Her vocal range is E3-C6.
- She is left handed. (as seen in Asian F )
- She describes her time in 'RENT' "the best time of her life." Source
- She is particularly close to fellow Film/Original Broadway Cast Member, Adam Pascal. They both grew up together in New York.
- Featured in Disney's Enchanted.