The daughter of Alan and Georgia Morissette, Alanis, born at the Riverside Hospital in Ottawa, Ontario on June 1st 1974, was one of three children in the family (she has an older brother named Chad Everet?and a twin brother named Wade).
Although the name Alanis is Greek itself, Alanis Morissette has no Greek background whatsoever. When she was asked, she explained her name’s origin saying:
“My dad’s name is Alan, and I think he probably loves the fact that his name is in my name! But it’s a Greek name, actually. My parents and I traveled a lot when I was younger, and I think my dad just saw it in a Greek newspaper. It a word to describe the wolf in the pack of wolves who takes off while the rest of the wolves roll their eyes — at least that’s what somebody told me!
As it turns out, Alan Morissette wanted his daughter to have a female version of his name, but he wasn’t particularly fond of the name Alanna. And one day, by chance, he spotted the name Alanis in a newspaper.
Alanis attended first the “Notre Dame High School” and then the “Glebe Collegiate Institute”, both located in Ottawa, Ontario.
Always ambitious, she would often set goals for herself, and upon achieving what she desired, she realized that anything was attainable with hard work. Alanis loved dancing and acting when she was young (probably still do). She started learning ballet and jazz dancing at the age of 7. She has also done a lot of stage and theater work, including a part on the highly popular kids television show, on the Nickelodean TV, “You Can’t Do That on Television” when she was 11. Alanis landed a job on “You Can’t Do That On Television” after winning a talent contest that aired on CJOH, the Canadian network that produced the show. Episode #90, “Pop Music”, introduced her to the big screen. It was a sketch comedy series that showcased her acting skills . In spite of the show’s popularity, Alanis left the show after a two year run to pursue a singing career. Using all the money she had earned from her stint on television, she quickly set up a recording company, off which to promote and market her own albums. This payed off, as two years later Alanis attracted the attention of a large Canadian record company. She eventually signed with them.
She spent most of her pre-pubescent years performing throughout Canada, singing “O Canada” at sporting events and even making the de rigueur appearance on “Star Search.” Alanis also appeared in the TV movie “Just One of the Girls” in 1993, which starred Corey Haim. She also seem to be quite fond of teaching, as she once suggested that she might have be English or Drama teacher if she hadn’t been involved in show business.
She has been writing songs for fun since 9. Alanis admired the music and character of Olivia Newton John (from “Grease”) tremendously when she was young, which is the main reason why she was so interested in music. She also loved the writing style of George Michael.
Later she declared:
“I used to write fictional songs when I was younger, and while it was very entertaining for me to write them and perhaps entertaining for others to hear them, I didn’t really feel connected enough to the music for me to be able to continue to sing those songs with conviction.“