Tara Lyn Strong (née Charendoff, February 12, 1973) is a Canadian actress, voice actress, and singer, who has done voice work in animated films and television series. She provided the voices for Dil Pickles from Rugrats, Bubbles from The Powerpuff Girls, Timmy Turner from The Fairly Odd Parents, Raven from Teen Titans, Ben Tennyson from Ben 10, and Twilight Sparkle from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.
Early life and career
Tara Lyn Charendoff was born on February 12, 1973 to Jewish-Canadian parents Lucy (1936–2004) and Syd Charendoff who ran a convenience/toy/candy store called The Wiz, and was raised in Toronto, Ontario. Strong's acting career began when she volunteered to be a soloist in a school production at age four. Soon, she began acting in the Yiddish Theater; though she did not know Yiddish, she memorized her lines phonetically. During this time, she also performed at the Toronto Jewish Theater (TJA), where she acted in A Night of Stars, and was featured in an audiotape for "Lay Down Your Arms" with the Habonim Youth Choir, where she sang the lyrics in both English and Hebrew, a feat she repeated on February 10, 2005, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel during the March of the Living dinner in honor of then-Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger.
At age thirteen, Strong was accepted into a performing arts school, where she landed her first professional role: the role of Gracie in the Limelight Theater's production of The Music Man. That same year, she booked a guest starring role in Mr. T's T. and T. Afterwards, she landed the title role in Hello Kitty's Furry Tale Theater and starred in the short-lived CBC Television sitcom Mosquito Lake before moving to Los Angeles in the midst of the 1994 Northridge earthquake.
Strong is the voice behind a multitude of North American animated characters, including main roles in The Fairly OddParents as Timmy Turner andPoof; Rugrats and All Grown Up! as Dil Pickles; The Powerpuff Girls as Bubbles; Ben 10 as Ben Tennyson, Upgrade, Benwolf, and Buzzshock; Teen Titans as Raven; Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends as Terrence; the singing voice of Meg Griffin and additional voices on Family Guy; My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic as Twilight Sparkle; and currently voices Betty Boop in commercials with Tress MacNeille.
She has also lent her voice to English-language localizations of Japanese anime such as Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke, as well as several video games, including her work as Elisa and Ursula in Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops; Paz Ortega Andrade in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker; Rikku inFinal Fantasy X, its sequel Final Fantasy X-2, and Kingdom Hearts II; Talwyn Apogee in Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction and its sequel,Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty and Harley Quinn replacing Arleen Sorkin in Batman: Arkham City. In June 2012, she voiced the main character "Juliet Starling" of Lollipop Chainsaw.
She has appeared in live roles in National Lampoon's Senior Trip, Sabrina Goes to Rome, Sabrina, Down Under, Mosquito Lake, and The Last White Dishwasher. She also made guest appearances on such shows as Forever Knight, Street Legal, Touched by an Angel, Take Home Chef, Party of Five,Comic Book: The Movie, Kung Fu: The Legend Continues, and 3rd Rock from the Sun. In 2012, she voiced the character "Plum" in Cartoon Hangover's Bravest Warriors, created by Pendleton Ward. She has the role of the character Miss Collins in Nickelodeon's live action series Big Time Rush. Strong has been nominated four times for an Annie Award, and once for a Daytime Emmy and she will voice Roxy of Winx Club, which will be broadcast on Nickelodeon.
In 2004, she won an Interactive Achievement Award for her role as Rikku in Final Fantasy X-2. She also served as the announcer for the 2000 Kids' Choice Awards, appeared as a guest at severalfan conventions (including BotCon, Jacon, Comic-Con International, and Anime Overdose), and was featured on the front cover of the July/August 2004 issue of Working Mother magazine, saying, "My son is now old enough to respond to my work. To me, that's what it is all about."
Prior to her marriage, she was originally credited under her maiden name, Charendoff. She has one sister, Marla Charendoff (born 1971). Strong attended Forest Hill Collegiate Institute, class of 1991. After leaving high school she studied at The Second City in Toronto for two years before moving to Los Angeles in January 1994. Strong and actress Neve Campbell lived together when they both moved to Los Angeles at the same time. They both auditioned for the same role, Julia, in the '90s TV series Party of Five. Strong appeared in an episode as Lorna.
She met former American actor, turned real estate agent, Craig Strong in early 1999 at a party hosted by Sharon Stone's sister. Tara and Craig married on May 14, 2000. They have two sons, Sammy (b. 2002) and Aden (b. 2004). The family resides in Toluca Lake, California with their dogs, Baci and Latka. She and Craig are the founders of VoiceStarz, Inc., an Internet-based company which teaches people how to get into the voiceover business. Craig is the CEO.
Discography For the documentary Bronies: The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony, Strong co-wrote and recorded the song "Take My Hand."