Christine Anu was born in Cairns, Queensland to a Torres Strait Islander mother from Saibai. Christine is arguably one of Australia’s most successful indigenous performers and most popular recording artistes, a statement which is backed by an award-winning repertoire which includes music, theatre, dance, film, television and children’s entertainment.
Anu began performing as a dancer and later went on to sing back-up vocals for The Rainmakers, which included Neil Murray from the Warumpi Band. Her first recording was in 1993 with “Last Train” which was a dance remake of a Paul Kelly song. The follow-up, “Monkey and the Turtle”, was based on a traditional story. After the success of the Neil Murray song “My Island Home’, Anu released her first album Stylin’ Up which went platinum, and gained her a position as a spokeswoman for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.
In 1995, Anu won an ARIA Award for best female recording artist as well as a Deadly Sounds National Aboriginal & Islander Music Award in 1996 for best female artist.
In 2000, Anu released her second album Come My Way which made her into a mainstream star. The single “Sunshine On A Rainy Day” was a Top 40 hit for 13 weeks in Australia and the album went gold. In 2000 Anu also sang the song “My Island Home” at the Sydney 2000 Olympics Closing Ceremony.
On 26 September 2010, Anu released a new digital only single, “Come Home” which was her first solo single since 2003.
Anu also had an acting and TV career. She appeared in Dating the Enemy, a 1996 Australian film starring Guy Pearce and Claudia Karvan and again in the Little Shop of Horrors later that 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. Other stage and screen projects have included; The Sapphires, Little Shop Of Horrors, Dating The Enemy, Matrix Reloaded, Moulin Rouge, Wildside, East West 101, The Alice, Play School, and Rainbow End.
In 2004, she became a judge on Popstars Live, a television quest broadcast on the Seven Network at which was similar in production style to 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 is a difficult decision for me to make, I do feel somewhat relieved that I can now focus on my music.”
Christine Anu is an exceptional public speaker who inspires from the heart and motivates people of all ages and from all walks of life. Christine shares stories from her humble beginnings in the Torres Strait Islands, on cultural hardship, family as well as the twists and turns of a career that spans across music, theatre, dance, film, television and children’s entertainment. Christine resonates with people and provides a real community focus while delivering key messages in all kinds of arenas and platforms—charity, community, cultural, education, entertainment and politics