Anneliese van der Pol was born in Amsterdam, North Holland,
Netherlands, to Willem van der Pol, who is Dutch and the director of the
Physical Plant at the California State University in Fullerton,
California, and Dyan Ross, an American from Brooklyn, New York City. Van
der Pol's mother named her after Anne Frank, after visiting the house
where Frank hid. Van der Pol has two older sisters, Rachel and Sarah,
and is of Jewish heritage. Van der Pol's family moved to her mother's
native United States when she was three years old, and she retains dual
citizenship between the Netherlands and the United States. She is fluent
in English and speaks a little Dutch.
Anneliese van der Pol attended Washington Elementary School in Bellflower, California. Van der Pol began acting in third grade and graduated from the theater program of the acclaimed Orange County High School of the Arts. She played Eva Perón in the Buena Park Civic Theatre production of Evita in 1999, and received positive reviews from the Los Angeles Times. At the age of fifteen, she was also one of the youngest actresses to play the role in a professional production.
Anneliese van der Pol subsequently starred as "Laurey" in an Austin, Texas musical theatre production of Oklahoma! from 2000 to 2001. Her performance earned her the Austin Critics Table Award nomination for "Best Actress in a Musical". Van der Pol was later cast as Chelsea Daniels, the best friend of the title character, on the Disney Channel's That's So Raven, a role she played from 2002 to 2007. Just as the first season of "That's So Raven" began, she went back to Austin Musical Theatre to perform in "Celebrate: AMT" a performance highlighting all the shows the company had done up to then. She was a featured soloist. Van der Pol has also appeared on the Disney Channel Games as a member of the Red Team; her teammates were Zac Efron, Kay Panabaker, Dylan Sprouse, Shin Koyamada, and Moises Arias. She was originally offered the role of Kim Possible but chose not to take the part. Anneliese also had a minor role in Bratz: The Movie, as Avery, a mean popular girl.
Anneliese van der Pol is a soprano and is trained in the belting vocal technique. In 2004, she recorded the song "Over It" for the Disney Channel Original Movie Stuck in the Suburbs. Her second solo recording, called "A Day in the Sun", a cover originally sung by Hilary Duff appeared on the album That's So Raven Too!. Van der Pol has been associated with several other Disney music projects, including the Elton John song "Circle of Life" for a special edition of The Lion King DVD, "A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes" for the Cinderella: Special Edition DVD, and "Candle on the Water" from Pete's Dragon on DisneyMania 4.
Anneliese van der Pol appeared in the role of "Belle" in Beauty and the Beast on Broadway, beginning on April 3, 2007. She is the final actress to play the role on Broadway before it closed after 13 years on July 29. On July 3, 2007, Van der Pol appeared on Live with Regis and Kelly, to talk about her role as Belle. Anneliese spoke about being the last Belle, and what things are like at the show. She also performed, "A Change In Me".
Anneliese van der Pol is one of only three cast members of That's So Raven (along with T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh and Rondell Sheridan) not to star in a Disney Channel Original Movie, although she is the only cast member star in a Walt Disney Theatrical Production.
Anneliese van der Pol is also set to star in a new musical called Vanities which will play at the Pasadena Playhouse from August 22, 2008 to September 28, 2008 prior to opening on Broadway.
Anneliese van der Pol was arrested on July 10, 2006 for driving with a 0.19 blood-alcohol level and colliding into two vehicles; she pleaded no contest to two misdemeanor charges, including driving under the influence. She was sentenced to 36 months (3 years) probation and USD$2,844 in fines in addition to attending alcohol education classes.
This Anneliese Van Der Pol Biography Page is Copyright © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub