Katharine Hope McPhee (born March 25, 1984) is an American pop singer, songwriter, and actor. She gained fame as a contestant on the fifth season of the Fox reality show American Idol in 2006, eventually finishing as the runner-up. Between 2012 and 2013, McPhee was one of the lead actors on both seasons of the NBC musical drama “Smash”, in which she played the character Karen Cartwright.
On the big screen, McPhee starred opposite Anna Faris in the Adam Sandler-produced comedy “The House Bunny.” McPhee’s previous television credits include an arc on “Community,” as well as episodes of “CSI: NY” and “The Family Guy.” She has also been featured on numerous musical television specials.
In addition to her work on “Smash,” McPhee, a Columbia recording artist, is currently working on a studio album, set for release in 2014.
McPhee’s self-titled debut album exploded onto the Billboard 200 chart in 2007 and landed at #2, selling over 381,000 copies (as of December 2010). It was the best chart debut for a female artist in two years. In 2009, she garnered a Young Hollywood Award for Best Female Vocalist.
Her second album, Unbroken, was released on Verve Forecast Records on January 5, 2010 and debuted at number 27 on the Billboard 200. The album featured the single “Had It All”, which peaked at number 22 on the Billboard AC chart.
Her third album, the holiday-themed “Christmas Is the Time to Say I Love You”, was released on October 12, 2010. The album debuted at number eleven on the Billboard Top Holiday Albums chart while the single “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” peaked at number sixteen on the Billboard AC chart.
In addition to her acting and singing career, McPhee is a passionate philanthropist and serves as the celebrity ambassador for Malaria No More. She also has served as the face of SexyHair and a spokesperson for Neutrogena.