Songwriter Katie Thompson heads to Broadway in ‘Big Fish’

Katie Thompson

Katie Thompson

If you don’t already know and love Katie Thompson, you will soon.  The vocal powerhouse has been a cherished member of the theatre community for years and now she is set to make her Broadway debut in Big Fish this fall alongside the likes of Norbert Leo Butz and Kate Baldwin.

It’s about time the  songwriter and performer, who has been moving audiences with her beautiful work for years, makes her way onto the Broadway stage.

Thompson is a gem of a performer who has honed her talent over the years to become an accomplished staple in the world of contemporary musical theatre and songwriting. She released her first solo album, What I’ve Done Right, in 2001 and has been consistently rocking our musical worlds since then and has since released KT Live in 2005 and Private Page in 2011.

One of Thompson’s major moments on the national radar was when So You Think You Can Dance choreographers began using her music in performances. One of her most memorable associations with the show was when her gut-wrenching “It Doesn’t Hurt” (if this song doesn’t move you, then you’d better double check to make sure you have a pulse) aired on the show in 2011. The song was paired with Stacey Tookey’s choreography and the moves of Tara-Jean Popowich and Vincent Desjardins to depict the relationship of someone struggling with mental illness and her significant other’s attempts to reach her.

The performance, which became a sensation both on the series and on YouTube, became an international hit and soon videos of dancers all over the world offering their own take on the song were showing up online. One of the performances set to her impassioned cover of “Heaven Is A Place on Earth” on So You Think You Can Dance was nominated for a 2011 Emmy Award.


Vincent Desjardins and Tara-Jean Popowich perform Katie Thompson’s “It Doesn’t Hurt” on So You Think You Can Dance.

What makes Katie incredibly cool is that she has long associated herself with new musical theatre writers who have fresh outlooks (and new songs) to share. She’s been recorded singing the work of Scott Alan (on his album Dreaming Wide Awake), Bobby Cronin (Reach the Sky), Kerrigan & Lowdermilk (Our First Mistake), and Joey Contreras (Love Me, Love Me Not).

She’s been featured in Giant at the Signature Theatre and New York Musical Theatre productions like R.R.R.E.D. and Bloodties. She’s also been associated with Piece and The Lighthouse Project workshop with Duncan Sheik

In Big Fish, opening at the Neil Simon Theatre on October 6, Thompson and her castmates will offer a new take on the beloved 2003 film. With music and lyrics by the acclaimed Andrew Lippa, the production is not to be missed.

Can’t wait until October? Catch Thompson in Big Fish’s pre-Broadway engagement at the Oriental Theatre in Chicago. Performances began on April 2 and it will open on April 19. The production will run until May 5.

Katie seems to leave a piece of her soul on the stage each time she performs which explains how she manages to give her audiences chills with her passionate lyrics and Broadway fans can look forward to experiencing whatever great things Thompson has up her sleeve next as a significant player in the future of theatre.

If you ever have the chance to see this talented woman perform live,  don’t hesitate. Her work is a little piece of magic that can bring a boost to anyone’s spirit.

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About Claire H.

Writer, performer, picture-taker, New Yorker. Find me on Twitter at @Claire_Hannum.

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