Janel Parrish

Janel Parrish was a Hawaii-born actress of stage, film and television who began her professional career at the age of six. Born on October 30, 1988 to a father of European descent and a mother of Han Chinese origin, Janel's ethnicity was referred to on her native island as Hapa (half-Chinese, half-Caucasian). Her first professional gig came about after her father answered an ad in the paper, advertising for the role of Young Cosette in a touring production of the musical Les Misérables. Parrish later went on to play the role on Broadway, showcasing both her singing and acting ability. Several more theatre roles followed, before she made her debut in the TV movie "Too Rich: The Secret Life of Doris Duke" (CBS) in 1999. The role opened up several more guest spots for the actress, including appearances on "The Bernie Mac Show" (FOX 2001-06). Also an accomplished musician, Parrish signed a recording contract with Geffen Records in 2007. When she made her feature film debut as Jade in the movie "Bratz" (2007), her song "Rainy Day" appeared on the soundtrack. The movie, while not critically or commercially successful, did raise her profile enough to improve her television roles, including the recurring role of May on the fantasy hit "Heroes" (NBC 2006-2010). After two seasons on the teen soap "Pretty Little Liars" (ABC Family 2010- ) in the recurring role of newly popular student Mona Vanderwaal, she became a full-time cast member in season 3. She also landed a supporting role in the indie romantic comedy "Celeste & Jesse Forever" (2012) starring Andy Samberg and Rashida Jones.