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Christine Anu

From Academic Kids

Christine Anu (born 1970) is an Australian pop singer from Cairns, Queensland. She is of Torres Strait Islander descent.

Contents

Musical career

Descended from the indigenous inhabitants of Saibai Island and Mabuiag Island, Anu began performing as a dancer. She then began singing backup vocals for The Rainmakers, which included Neil Murray of the Warumpi Band.

She began recording in 1993 with "Last Train", dance remake of a Paul Kelly song. The follow-up, "Monkey and the Turtle", was based on a traditional story. After "My Island Home", she released her first album, Stylin' Up which garnered some mainstream success, especially the dance single "Party", and also gained her a position as a spokeswoman for Aborigines.

In 1995, Neil Murray won an Australian Performing Rights Association songwriting award for writing "My Island Home". Christine Anu won an ARIA Award for best female recording artist as well as a Deadly Sounds National Aboriginal & Islander Music Awards Award in 1996 for best female artist.

Baz Luhrmann asked her to sing on the song "Now Until The Break Of Day" on his album Something For Everybody album. It was released as a single and the video then won another ARIA award.

It took five years for a follow-up to Stylin' Up to be released; Come on Down made her a mainstream star. The single "Sunshine On A Rainy Day" was a Top 40 hit for 13 weeks in Australia.

Acting and TV career

Christine Anu has also had a notable acting and TV career. She appeared in Dating The Enemy an Australian film starring Guy Pearce and Claudia Karvan in 1996. She then appeared in an Australian stage version of The Little Shop Of Horrors in the same year.

Anu's stage career developed with a starring role in Rent in 1998 and 1999. Anu was offered a role in a Broadway production of this musical but had to decline due to commitments in recording her second album. Her links with Baz Luhrmann led to him offering her a part in Moulin Rouge!. In 2003, she appeared as Kali in The Matrix Reloaded and played the character on the video game Enter The Matrix.

In 2004, she became a judge on Popstars Live, a television quest broadcast on the Seven Network at 6.30pm on a Sunday nightin Australia along the lines of Australian Idol. The program failed to achieve a similar level of success leading network executives to pressure the judges to offer harsher criticism of the contestants. Christine Anu refused to offer harsher criticism leading to her resignation as a judge in April 2004. In a statement issued on her departure, she said: "I chose to play a positive role model and wanted to encourage these young people in their endeavours, rather than criticise them. Although leaving Popstars Live was a difficult decision for me to make, I do feel somewhat relieved that I can now focus on my music."

Discography

  • Stylin Up (1995)
  • Come My Way (2000)
  • 45 Degrees (2003)

Acting/TV Career

  • Dating The Enemy (1996)
  • Little Shop of Horrors (1997)
  • Rent (1998-99)
  • Moulin Rouge (2001)
  • The Matrix Reloaded (2003)
  • Enter The Matrix (2003)
  • Popstars Live (2004)

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