Glee actress Lea Michele was originally born with the surname Sarfati, but cruel taunts at school resulted in her altering her name for her first audition, and she has kept her stage moniker ever since.
“Sarfati. That’s my real last name. It’s Sephardic, which is Spanish/Jew. I don’t use it a lot because I got ‘Lea So-fatty’, ‘Lea So-farty’ at school,” she explained to Jay Leno during an appearance on The Tonight Show. “When I was little and I went on my first audition, they were like, ‘And may we have your name,’ and I was like, ‘Lea Michele’. And I’ve been Lea Michele ever since.”
The brunette beauty is now starring in the holiday movie New Year’s Eve, and she admits the build up to Christmas is a great time for her and her family because she gets to tuck into calorific bowls of pasta.
“Every year it’s like, ‘Where are we going to go for the holidays,’ and it’s like, ‘We’re going to go to my mom’s side.’ Because then I get these big bowls of pasta, and that’s what I want! Turkey is like a side-dish, we have pasta.”