Denise Van Outen Biography
The 1999 "Rear of the Year" is a real action girl. In 2009 Denise Van Outen climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for "Comic Relief" and she now plans to do the Inca Trek of Peru for Breast Cancer with Fearne Cotton and Alexandra Burke. They will be trekking with six ladies who have had breast cancer.
Born Denise Kathleen Outen on 27th May 1970 in Basildon Essex, she added the Van to her name when she was a teenager. She has been in the limelight since she was 7-years-old when she began modelling knitting patterns. She loved performing from an early age and she went to the Sylvia Young Theatre School in 1986 at the age of 12-years-old.
Whilst at school she won the part of Eponine in "Les Miserables" in the West End, alongside fellow student Melanie Blatt and the role paid her school fees. She also appeared in "Stop the World I Want to Get Off" directed by Anthony Newley and the Royal Shakespeare Company's production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
As well as being voted "Rear of the Year" in 1999, in 2007 she topped the poll run by Grazia Magazine to find "The Most Desired Bikini Body."
Van Outen made her television debut in an ITV children's show Scratchy & Co's Mini Youth Programme "Massive." Her first appearance in adult TV was in 1996 when she joined "The Big Breakfast" on Channel 4 as a weather girl and travel reporter and she landed the main co-presenting role the following year.
She has designed two fashion collections the first being a range of maternity wear in March 2010 which was followed by an Autumn/Winter collection.
Van Outen's private life has always attracted a lot of media attention. When she was 17 she was in a relationship with Gary Glitter, who was subsequently imprisoned for being a paedophile.
She was engaged to the lead singer of Jamiroquai, Jay Kay in 2001 and the wedding was all arranged but his addiction to cocaine led her to break off the engagement. His album "A Funk Odyssey" is about their break-up and the album contains the song "Little L" relates to his fight against his drug addiction.
In November 2007 she took a job which was to change her life forever. She was asked to be a judge on the television talent show, "Any Dream Will Do" to find an actor to play Joseph in Andrew Lloyd Webber's forthcoming production of "Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat."
On stage came a young man with a great voice and curly black hair, his name was Lee Mead. He not only won the role but also the heart of Denise Van Outen. After the show they started dating and in April 2009 they married in a romantic beach ceremony in the Seychelles. Their daughter Betsy was born on May 1st 2010.
Van Outen has just joined the cast of "Legally Blonde" at the Savoy Theatre opposite Sheridan Smith. She is loving being back on stage and thoroughly enjoying what she calls a "fun show" and loving every minute of it.
Her husband Lee Mead has not seen her in the role yet, as he is appearing in "Wicked" and helping to look after Betsy.