Phillipa Soo's mother was born and lived for the first part of her life in Southern Illinois, and is currently an artist; her father a doctor and of Chinese descent. Soo went to Libertyville High School, then went on to study at the Juilliard School of Drama and eventually achieved a BFA.
After graduating Juilliard in 2012, Soo was cast as Natasha Rostova in the Ars Nova production of Dave Malloy's Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, based on 70 pages of Leo Tolstoy's War & Peace. Phillipa Soo later met Lin-Manuel Miranda and was introduced and asked to take part in Hamilton in 2014.
She earned a Tony nomination and continues to take part in Broadway musicals. Her most recent musical was Amélie, which was set to begin performances in spring 2017 and ran until May 21, 2017.