Lea Michele Sarfati (born August 29, 1986), known professionally as Lea Michele, is an American actress and singer, best known for her performance as Rachel Berry on the Fox television series Glee. Michele began working professionally as a child actress on Broadway in productions such as Les Misrables, Ragtime, and Fiddler on the Roof. In 2006 she originated the role of Wendla in the Broadway musical Spring Awakening. Michele was born in the Bronx, New York City. She is the only daughter of Edith, a nurse, and Marc Sarfati, a delicatessen owner. Her mother is Italian American and Roman Catholic, while her father is a Spanish Sephardic Jew. Michele was raised Catholic, and has stated that her father 'gladly' attends church with her and her mother. She grew up in Tenafly, New Jersey. She attended Rockland Country Day School for elementary school in New York and then Tenafly High School. Michele was home schooled one year while working in Toronto, Ontario on Ragtime.
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