That's different! These Canadian celebrities with stage names were actually born with very unique names. You know many of these stars by one or two-word designations, but many have long, powerful names with intriguing backgrounds. 

With a mix of singers and actors, the Canadians on this list come from all over the country and have made their mark in the entertainment industry.

The backstories behind their names include honoured family members and heritages since they come from a melting pot of Canadian citizens.

Though many of the celebs on this list have strayed far from home into Hollywood, you can still find tons who own property in their hometowns, others who come from small towns across the country, and some big stars who have lived in Canada at one point. 

Get some name inspiration with these 8 Canadian celebrities!

Shania Twain

The "You're Still The One" singer was born in Windsor, Ontario with the name Eilleen Regina Edwards.

According to The Canadian Encyclopedia, she took the name "Shania" from her Ojibwa heritage. It comes from her co-worker at Deerhurst Resort where she performed before becoming a Hollywood star. The last name Twain comes from her step-father Jerry Twain, who was killed in a car accident with her mother in 1987.

Nina Dobrev 

The Vampire Diaries star was born in Sofia, Bulgaria with the name Nikolina Konstantinova Dobreva. She moved to Toronto at age two and was raised there until 2009, having joined the acting industry in 2006.


The rapper "started from the bottom" in Toronto with the birth name ​Aubrey Drake Graham. When he starred on Degrassi: The Next Generation as Jimmy Brooks, he was credited as Aubrey Graham and started going by just his middle name Drake when he got into rapping and singing. 


DJ and musician deadmau5 hails from Niagara Falls, Ontario under the legal name ​Joel Thomas Zimmerman. His stage name pronounced "dead mouse" is also accompanied by a signature that reads "mau5head", per The Canadian Encyclopedia.

The Weeknd

Toronto's The Weeknd was born to Ethiopian immigrants with the name Abel Tesfaye.

During a Reddit AMA in 2013, the singer explained that "I hated my name at the time though so I tried it as a stage name. It sounded cool. I took out the "e" because there was already a Canadian band named the weekend (copyright issues)."

k.d. lang

The singer and songwriter from Edmonton, Alberta was born Kathryn Dawn Lang. Her stage name is made up of her two initials and is actually written with no capital letters. 

Cobie Smulders

Vancouver's How I Met Your Mother star was born to Dutch and English parents with the name Jacoba Francisca Maria Smulders. IMDb claims that Smulders comes from her dutch father and means "Son of a Miller". 

In an interview on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Smulders explained that Cobie comes from her first name Jacoba, which is pronounced "ya-co-ba". 

Vanessa Morgan

Riverdale's Vanessa Morgan hails from Ottawa, Ontario with the birth name Vanessa Morgan Mziray. She professionally goes by only her first and middle name. 

Comments are now closed.
Account Settings
Share Feedback
Log Out

Register this device to receive push notifications