O’Neil first rose to fame as the first woman to win the Canadian Idol in the 2005 season. In addition to working on her musical career, Melissa who started out as a theater actress has branched fuly into acting. She is known for her role as Two/Portia Lin on Dark Matter which was canceled in September 2017.
Melissa O’Neil Bio/Ethnicity
Melissa Crystal O’Neil was born on July 12, 1988, in Calgary, Alberta to Tim O’Neil and Alison Yeung. Her mom is Chinese, and her father has Irish ancestry, making Melissa of Irish and Chinese ethnicity. Her maternal grandpa gave her the Chinese name Oh Seemun.
O’Neil attended Terry Fox Junior High School and later Lester B. Pearson High School. With an early passion for entertainment, Melissa was involved in many theater productions within the Calgary scene. She was working at a daycare center when she decided to audition for the third season of American Idol.
At her auditions, judges stood in awe of her voice and she made it through to the top 100, and then the top 32 and ultimately the winner of the competition, making her the youngest and first female to win the Canadian Idol.
As part of her winning prize, Melissa signed a recording deal with Sony BMG Canada and released her debut single “Alive”, which debuted atop the Canadian singles chart and remained there for four weeks. The single received a platinum certification from the CRIA and has since been certified four times platinum.
The successful single was succeeded by her debut studio album Melissa O’Neil released on November 22, 2005. In support of her album, O’Neil embarked on her debut tour the Let It Go Tour which covered North Bay, Ontario. She was supported by her Canadian Idol runner-up, Rex Goudie.
While still working to advance her musical career, Melissa went back to the stage where it all started, appearing in many stage productions including the musical of Dirty Dancing in Toronto, Ontario.
Melissa made her feature film debut in 2010 starring in Broken Hearts. In 2011, she made her Stratford Shakespeare Festival debut. She also had a guest role on Camelot. At the Princess of Wales Theatre, Melissa played in a sit-down production of Les Misérables in Toronto. Her portrayal of the role of Eponine earned her the Dora Award for Outstanding Female Performance.
She then reprised her role in the Broadway production of Les Miserables. Her outstanding works on stage then got her the role of Two/Portia Lin in Canadian science fiction series Dark Matter which premiered on June 12, 2015, on both Space and Syfy. During the same period, Melissa also got a recurring role in Rogue.
After three seasons and 39 episodes, Syfy canceled the series on the 1st of September 2017.
After the series was canceled, Melissa penned a heartfelt note about her experience on the show.
While on Dark Matter, O’Neil made guest appearances in the TV shows; This Life and Second Jen.
Melissa O’Neil Facts
In the final day of the top 100 competition, Melissa forgot the lyrics to the song she chose and literally froze. However, that didn’t stop the judges from seeing her through to the top 32 round.
Shortly after being crowned the winner of Canadian Idol Season 3, O’Neil who prior to her crown was just an average Canadian girl received a congratulatory phone call from the Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin.
In 2007 she was nominated for the Juno Award for Best New Artist but pop-rock singer-songwriter, Tomi Swick beat her to the award.
Melissa O’Neil Married/Husband
As of 2017, Melissa has no husband and has never been married. However, some of her Instagram posts tell that she must have previously been in a relationship. During the years 2011, 2012 and 2013, O’Neil posted cozy photos of her and a mystery guy. While she never said anything about a relationship with him, the photos scream that there might just have been something more between them.
She stopped posting photos of herself and the guy in 2014. In 2015/2016, Melissa began posting photos of her and a certain Daniel Birnbaum adding phrases like “I love you” in the caption of almost every post. However, the man is her agent and they seem to be really close friends and nothing more.
Melissa O’Neil Body Measurements
Since attaining stardom, Melissa has completely revamped her looks and even dropped a few pounds. Here are her body measurements:
Height: 5 feet 4 inches (1.63 m)
Breasts-Waist-Hips: 35-24-35 inches (89-61-89 cm)