Born and raised in Monmouth County, New Jersey along with her sister, Jennifer, who is also a model and actress, Ashley's first taste of stardom came when she was only 3 years old. Discovered by Bill Perlman, her manager to this day, in a local mall, Tisdale first got a role in a JC Penney commercial. This led to her starring in over one hundred other adverts which increased her interest in acting to the point where she saw the play Les Miserables at eight years old and wanted to audition. Taking only one singing lesson beforehand, she landed the role of Cosette and toured with the company. In the following years, she took roles in other plays for her local comunity centre as well as touring internationally with the play, Annie.
In the late 1990's, Tisdale took guest roles in several big TV shows including Charmed and Beverly Hills 90210 as well as voicing a character in the 1998 Pixar film, A Bug's Life. However, it was in 2000 when she appeared on Boston Public that she first gained critical acclaim, winning a Young Artist Award in the category of Best Performance in a TV Drama. From here, she had recurring roles in two popular sitcoms: The Hughleys and Still Standing as well as a small role in the popular cult film, Donnie Darko.
Her first starring role came in the form of Maddie Fitzpatrick on the Disney Channel show, The Suite Life of Zach & Cody. Her popularity on the show led to her being cast in the Disney Channel original movie, High School Musical. Originally auditioning for the part of Troy
's love interest, Gabriella Montez
, Tisdale was instead given the role of Sharpay
as her alto voice suited the antagonistic role better than the romantic role. In the same year, she provided a dub for the english version of the anime Mimi wo Sumaseba AKA Whisper of the Heart
In 2007, Tisdale returned to the role of Sharpay Evans in High School Musical 2 as well as appearing as herself in both a documentary about her blossoming music career and in the direct to DVD installment of the Bring it On franchise entitled Bring it On: In it To Win it, where she sang her first single, He Said She Said. She also returned to voice acting in the Disney Channel cartoon Phineas & Ferb. In 2008, she left The Suite Life of Zach & Cody to focus on her music career as well as to star in a direct to DVD movie, Picture This, which she executively produced and High School Musical 3: Senior Year, which was a phenomenal success. In 2009, Tisdale's only scheduled feature film release is the fantasy movie, They Came From Upstairs.
In 2006, Tisdale made history when she became the first female artist to have three songs in the charts at once, all three of which were taken from the High School Musical soundtrack. This officially began her music career which continued the same year when she signed with Warner Bros. Records and released a three song EP entitled He Said She Said which included the titular song, Headstrong and a cover of Last Christmas, a song which was originally made famous by WHAM!
In 2007, she released her first album, Headstrong, which went in at number 5 on the Billboard 200, selling 64,000 copies in the first week and is now currently listed as Gold, having sold over 500,000 units. After appearing on the soundtracks for both the High School Musical sequels, it was announced that Tisdale's as of yet untitled second album will be released in 2009 with a supposedly 'more rock and edgier'
sound than Headstrong.
Ashley Tisdale's likeness and voice were used in all three High School Musical
games for her character Sharpay Evans.