April 20, 1972 (age 40)
Sharonville, Ohio, U.S.
Occupation Actress, model, dancer, television personality, singer, entertainer
Years active 1990–present
Spouse(s) Dennis Rodman (1998–1999) (divorced)
Dave Navarro (2003–2007) (divorced)
Partner(s) Rob Patterson (2008–2012)
Simon Cowell (2012–present)
Tara Leigh Patrick (born April 20, 1972), better known by her stage name Carmen Electra, is an American glamour model, actress, television personality, singer, and dancer. She gained fame for her appearances in Playboy magazine, on the MTV game show Singled Out, on the TV series Baywatch, and dancing with the Pussycat Dolls, and has since had roles in the parody films Scary Movie, Date Movie, Epic Movie, Meet the Spartans, and Disaster Movie.
Electra was born in Sharonville, Ohio, the daughter of Patricia, a singer, and Harry, a guitarist and entertainer. She attended Ann Weigel Elementary School and then studied dance at Dance Artists dance studio under Gloria J. Simpson, in Western Hills, a neighborhood of Cincinnati. Carmen graduated from Princeton High School in Sharonville. She also attended the School for Creative and Performing Arts (SCPA) in the Cincinnati Public School District (CPS). She has Irish, German, and Cherokee ancestry.
Electra started her professional career in 1990 as a dancer at Kings Island amusement park in Mason, Ohio in the show "It’s Magic", one of the more popular shows in the park's history. In 1991, she moved to California and met Prince. Soon after, Electra signed a recording contract with Prince's Paisley Park Records and began a short-lived singing career. During her time at Paisley Park Records, she officially became known as Carmen Electra.
In 1995, Electra started appearing in television programs. In May 1996 she was featured in a nude pictorial in Playboy magazine, the first of several. This exposure led to higher profile television appearances, including Baywatch (cast member from 1997–1998, as Leilani "Lani" McKenzie) and MTV's Singled Out. She returned to Baywatch for the 2003 reunion movie, Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding.
Electra was featured in Playboy four more times: June 1997, December 2000, April 2003 and the January 2009 anniversary issue. She was on the cover three times: December 2000, April 2003 and on the 55th anniversary Issue in January 2009.
Electra has appeared in films such as American Vampire (1997), Good Burger (1997), The Mating Habits of the Earthbound Human (1999), the horror spoof Scary Movie (2000) and also appeared in Meet the Spartans (2008), Scary Movie 4 (2006), Epic Movie (2007), Date Movie (2006), Disaster Movie (2008), the remake of the 1970s TV show Starsky & Hutch (2004) and Cheaper by the Dozen 2. She won an MTV Movie Award (best kiss) for Starsky & Hutch. She also appeared in an episode of House (Series 1 Ep.21) in which she portrayed herself as an injured golfer and an injured farmer, playing out House's fantasy.
In 1999, she appeared in the Bloodhound Gang's music video of "The Inevitable Return of the Great White Dope." In 2005, she joined the voice cast of the animated series Tripping the Rift, replacing Gina Gershon as the voice of the sexy android "Six". Also in 2005, she began the Naked Women's Wrestling League, acting as the commissioner for the professional wrestling promotion. In late 2006, Carmen began to be featured in commercials by Taco Bell.
Electra's video game work includes appearing as characters in Def Jam: Fight for New York and is one of the celebrity challenges in the video game ESPN NFL 2K5.
Electra has produced exercise videos and equipment. Her Carmen Electra Aerobic Striptease is a five-disc DVD series that combines teaching classic stripping moves with a low impact cardio workout, which also starred Jon Eby. She also endorses the Electra Pole, a pole dancing kit released in January 2008.
In 1997, Electra modeled for the covers of the comic books Razor and the Ladies of London Night by London Night Studios.
Electra appeared in commercials for Maxim Men's Hair Color products (2004–2005).
In 2006, Electra signed on as the spokesmodel for Ritz Camera Centers, appearing in their television and print ads with CEO David Ritz. She is featured in some video spoofs of lonelygirl15 that advertised Epic Movie. That same year she appeared as the face and spokesperson for the MAX Factor Make-Up line (beginning in 2006) in their television and print ads.
Electra appeared as a guest judge on So You Think You Can Dance Season 8 on July 6, 2011. She appeared along with regular series judges Nigel Lythgoe and Mary Murphy and fellow guest judge Travis Wall.
In 2012 Electra joined Britain's Got Talent as a guest judge for the auditions staged in London, she acted as a replacement for Amanda Holden who was absent due to complications following child birth.