Denise Van Outen
Birth Date:
May 27, 1974
Birth Place:
Basildon, Essex, England, UK
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 First coming to prominence as a co-presenter on “The Big Breakfast” (1997-1998), British actress, television presenter and singer Denise Van Outen gained more recognition and popularity thanks to her portrayal of Roxie Hart in the musical “Chicago” both in the West End (2001) and on Broadway (2002) as well as for finishing the runner-up position in the tenth series of the BBC One dancing show “Strictly Come Dancing.” She also has starred in the television series “Kappatoo” (1990), “Babes in the Wood” (ITV, 1998-1999) and “Where the Heart Is” (ITV, 2005-2006). She has served as a narrator on “The Only Way Is Essex” since 2010.

As for her private life, Van Outen was in relationship with Brown's club owner Richard Traviss from 2003 until they broke up in May 2005. In 2007, she dated fellow Sylvia Young student James Lance for a few weeks. Currently, Van Outen has been separated from husband Lee Mead, whom she married in 2009. They have one child together.    


Childhood and Family:

Denise Van Outen was born Denise Kathleen Outen on May 27, 1974, in Basildon, Essex, England, to parents Ted and Kathleen Outen. She has an older brother, Jackie, and an older sister, Terry. She showed an interest in both modeling and performing at an early age, and later attended  the Sylvia Young Theatre School. In 1986, at age 12, Denise starred as Eponine in “Les Miserables” along with  fellow Sylvia Young student Melanie Blatt, the Anthony Newley helmed production of “Stop the World - I Want to Get Off,” and “A Midsummer Night's Dream” with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

After a series of dating, Denise eventually married “Any Dream Will Do” winner Lee Mead on April 25, 2009 in a surprise ceremony on a beach in the Seychelles. She gave birth to her first child, Betsy Mead, on May 1, 2010. In July 2013, Denise confirmed that she had separated and filed for divorce from husband Lee Mead as their marriage had suffered because of their massive work schedules.      

Strictly Come Dancing            


Denise Van Outen began performing on stage as well as modeling when she was still a child. As a teenager, she landed the lead role of Tracy Cotton on the children's television series “Kappatoo,” which aired on ITV Network (CITV) from January 20, 1990 to May 31, 1990. She also sang with  Cathy Warwick in  the girl group Those2Girls. Besides, she provided backing vocals for  the band Dreadzone.

Van Outen's big break came when she joined Channel 4's light entertainment television show “The Big Breakfast” in 1997, but she decided to leave the show at the end of 1998 in order to further pursue her acting career. During her time at “The Big Breakfast,” Van Outen appeared as Jill in ITV1's version of the pantomime “Jack and the Beanstalk” (1998) and made guest appearances in “The Young Person's Guide to Becoming a Rock Star” and “The Bill” (both 1998). She also portrayed Leigh Jackson on the British sitcom “Babes in the Wood” (ITV, 1998-1999), opposite Karl Howman and Samantha Janus. In 1999, she played the lead character of Alex in the “Horny” segment, directed by Stephen Hopkins, of the anthology film “Tube Tales.” 

Entering the new millennium, Van Outen had a supporting role as Maureen on the crime/comedy “ Love, Honour and Obey,” opposite Sadie Frost, Jonny Lee Miller and Jude Law,  appeared in the television series “How Much Do You Love Me?” (both 2000), and guest starred in :Murder in Mind” (2001). In April 2001, she began playing Roxie Hart on the stage in the hit musical “Chicago” at the Adelphi Theatre in the West End. She went on to reprise the role on Broadway in the spring of 2002 before returning to the show's London version in late April 2002. Later that same year, she was one of many special guest stars in a performance of “The Play What I Wrote” in London's West End. Van Outen revisited the West End in 2003 when she starred in Andrew Lloyd Webber's one-woman show  “Tell Me on a Sunday” at London's Gielgud Theatre. Both she and the show were huge successes.

In 2005, Van Outen returned to the small screen by joining the cast of the sentimental drama series “Where the Heart Is” (ITV), where she portrayed single mother Kim Blakeney. She kept the role for the series two. Van Outen played Rita on the 2006 film “Are You Ready for Love?”, opposite  Michael Brandon, Ed Byrne and Andy Nyman, and Lynnin the 2008 short film “One Careful Owner.” In 2007, she played Maureen in the London revival of “Rent Remixed” directed by William Baker until December 22. However, she had to cancel some performances due to a throat infection.

In February 2008, Van Outen began a co-hosting gig in “Capital Breakfast” on Capital Radio, for which she reunited with “The Big Breakfast” co-presenter Johnny Vaughan. She left the job in July 2008 because of tense with Vaughan.     

 In 2009, Van Outen was cast as Mary in the BBC series “Hotel Babylon.” Later that same year, she hit the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for the first time with “Blondes,” a show by Jackie Clune. In October 2010, she replaced Jill Halfpenny to play the role of Paulette Bunafonte on the West End production of “Legally Blonde,” a role she had for the next six months. Since 2010, Van Outen has been a narrator on the BAFTA Award winning reality television show “The Only Way Is Essex.”

In 2012, Van Outen starred opposite Danny Dyer and Sarah Harding in the comedy film “Run for Your Wife,” which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival on May 19, 2012. Later that same year, in  September, the Basildon, Essex native participated as a contestant in the tenth series of “Strictly Come Dancing,” partnered with professional dancer James Jordan. They finished as runners-up with singer Kimberley Walsh and her partner Pasha Kovalev, behind the winner gymnast Louis Smith and professional partner Flavia Cacace.    

Since Spring 2013, Van Outen has presented her own Saturday afternoon radio show on London's Magic 105.4, airing between 1pm and 3pm.

Beginning in January 2014, Van Outen is set to star in a UK tour of “Some Girl I Used to Know,” a one woman play which she has co-penned with Terry Ronald.


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Exclusive: Denise Van Outen reveals she's ready to start dating again
SP_COP - May 26, 2014 -
Denise Van Outen has posed for an exclusive photoshoot with HELLO! magazine to mark her 40th birthday and revealed that she is ready to start dating again.The television and radio presenter split fr...
Pammie who? Denise Van Outen wears Baywatch-style swimsuit as she gears up for her Sport Relief challenge
SP_COP - October 03, 2013 -
She may have just trekked along the Great Wall of China for charity, but Denise Van Outen is already gearing up for he next challenge.The Magic FM presenter sported a tiny cut-out red swimsuit for the...
Sunshine break for one: Denise Van Outen sizzles in zebra-print string bikini as she holidays alone
SP_COP - April 08, 2013 -
Her husband Lee Mead and daughter Betsy spent the Easter break wrapped up against the cold in the UK.But Denise Van Outen jetted herself over Dubai to soak up the sun over the bank holiday, spending a...
Denise Van Outen channels Madonna for Red Nose Day
SP_COP - March 08, 2013 -
Strictly Come Dancing contestant Denise Van Outen has dressed up as Madonna from Desperately Seeking Susan to raise money for Red Nose Day.She wore a tight, black dress, glitzy cardigan, layers of nec...