Katharine McPhee was born in Los Angeles in 1984 and is an American singer, songwriter and actress. She came into the public eye in 2005 after competing on American Idol, however McPhee has always been in the performing world. Her father, Daniel McPhee used to be a television producer while her mother and sister have been American Idol vocal coaches.
In 2005, McPhee competed in the fifth series of American Idol, performing a rendition of “God Bless the Child” for her audition. Receiving praise from judges and votes from the public, she made it to the final of the competition but was eventually beaten by Taylor Hicks.
In 2006, McPhee signed to a record company and released her first single “Somewhere Over the Rainbow/My Destiny” which she performed on American Idol. The single went on to become the second highest selling single of the year. After this, McPhee began to appear on television series such as Ugly Betty, Community and CSI: NY at the same time as releasing her first album, named “Katharine McPhee”.
Her television break came in 2012, when she was cast as Karen Cartwright in the NBC programme Smash. Based on the New York theatrical community, Smash told the story of creating “Bombshell”, a brand new musical about Marilyn Monroe, where Karen Cartwright was unexpectedly cast as the lead. With an original soundtrack, McPhee gained a new legion of fans performing alongside Broadway stars including Megan Hilty, Christian Borle and Anjelica Huston.
McPhee made her Broadway debut in 2018 as Jenna Hunterson in Waitress. She first played the role from 10 April - 17 Jun. 2018, reprising from 5 July - 19 Aug. 2018. McPhee then originated the role of Jenna in the West End production of Waitress, which opened at the Adelphi Theatre in 2019.