On the Couch with Katherine Allen

Katherine Allen AAR On the CouchWho is Katherine Allen?
Katherine Allen is a soprano working in Germany and Australia. She will make her debut with Victorian Opera in February 2024 singing Cunégonde in Candide.

What would you do differently from what you do now?
I feel that I’m at an exciting point in my life and career: I get to explore new cities, meet new people, speak new languages. At times, I do look with gentle envy at friends of mine who have found stable jobs and have a much better idea of exactly where they’ll be in 5 years(!).

But when I put myself in their shoes and ask myself the question – would I prefer that life to mine? The answer is always a resounding no! Until that answer changes, there’s nothing I’d do differently to what I am doing now. For that I feel very grateful.

Who inspires you and why?
Beyoncé! Perhaps that’s not a typical response for an opera singer, but she is my biggest inspiration as a performer. Her ability to communicate with her audience is remarkable – she will tell you everything with the movement of an eyebrow or the turn of her head. Her vocal ability is tremendous and extremely versatile, her music is innovative and full of important cultural references, and well… if only I could dance half as well as she does.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Currently, returning to Australia for work has been my favourite holiday destination. Having lived in the UK and Germany for the past 3 years, coming home for performances has given me precious time here to spend with family and friends. This place will always be my home, and I love the sense of belonging I feel when I touch down at the airport.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I’d take them for an amazing coffee and a good brunch! Perhaps with a view of the water somewhere. That is Australia to me.

What are you currently reading?
I’ve been reading Voltaire’s Candide to help me better understand the story that we are telling in our show. Every day or so I’ll flick to the section of the plot we’re working on, and it helps me to find characterisation, detail, and context.

What are you currently listening to?
Beyoncé! And Candide.

Happiness is?
Sunshine, sunscreen, and lots of friends around you.

What does the future hold for you?
I’m super excited to sing in Candide with Victorian Opera this February. The cast, creatives, and crew are incredibly talented, hard-working, and generous. It has been such a joy to work with them and I can’t wait to put our show in front of an audience. In the long-run, I hope the future holds a lot of opera, travel, and happiness.

Katherine stars as Cunégonde in Victorian Opera’s production of Candide – which will be presented at the Palais Theatre from 8 – 10 February 2024. For more information, visit: www.victorianopera.com.au for details.

Image: Katherine Allen (supplied)