While it seemed like this beauty became famous overnight as one of the stars of High School Musical
, her journey to fame actually took a decade. Significantly older than her HSM
costars, Coleman was already 25 when Disney's smash 2006 TV-movie changed her life. The South Carolina native began performing while still in high school, appearing on stage and in commercials, and even writing, directing and starring in her own one-woman vehicle. Although she had a handful of parts in the '90s, she jump-started her career by moving to Los Angeles in the 2000s, winning guest spots on a variety of series (Gilmore Girls
, Malcolm in the Middle
, Boston Public
), invariably playing younger than her actual years. HSM
and a recurring role on the Disney Channel's hit series The Suite Life of Zack & Cody
planted her firmly in the spotlight and landed her a spot on the third season of Dancing With the Stars
, where she finished fourth. Off screen, Coleman is involved with number of children’s charities, including UNICEF, the Starlight Children’s Foundation, the Children’s Miracle Network and the Amazing Grace Children’s Foundation.Monique Coleman Fast Facts:
- Began acting at age 8 with the Workshop Theatre School of Dramatic Arts of South Carolina.
- In high school, she wrote, produced and directed a one-woman show called Voices from Within.
- Nominated for a Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Movie or Feature Film: Young Ensemble in 1999 for The Ditchdigger's Daughter.
- Won a CAMIE (Character and Morality in Entertainment) Award for her role in the 2006 TV movie The Reading Room.
- Participated in the inaugural Disney Channel Games in 2006.
- Voiced the character of Fontaisha in a 2010 episode of the Cleveland Show.
- Monique Coleman Relationships:
- Roz Coleman - Mother
- DePaul University, The Theatre School, Chicago, IL (BFA in Acting, 2002)