Soprano Katie Harman parlayed a historic pop culture title into a robust and multifaceted career in opera, musical theater as well as with symphony orchestras and a variety of special projects - solidifying her as a unique breed of Classical artist with crossover appeal.
In 2018, Katie was honored as a Top 10 Finalist in the prestigious National Opera Association Awards, and in 2019 made her International Operatic Debut as Countess Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Prague Summer Nights Festival. Other critically acclaimed roles have included Sandman/Dew Fairy in Hansel und Gretel (Brava Opera Theater), Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun (Elsinore Theatre), Emma Carew in Jekyll & Hyde (Stumptown Stages), Yum Yum in The Mikado (Obsidian Opera), Kathie in The Student Prince (Gold Coast Opera), Marion Paroo in The Music Man (The Ross Ragland Theater), Lily in The Secret Garden (Staged!) and Lucy in The Telephone (Portland Opera SummerFest). She has headlined with prestigious organizations such as the Boston Pops Orchestra, LA Philharmonic, Denver Philharmonic, Utah Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Tuscaloosa Symphony, Shreveport Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Newport Symphony, Eugene Symphony, Ocean City Pops, Astoria Music Festival, and Sunriver Music Festival.
Katie’s frequent collaboration with artists from across genres gave rise to her popular Katie Harman & Friends concert series which feature lush arrangements by respected colleagues in a lively variety-show format. Katie also delights in guest appearances with beloved Thomas Lauderdale and Pink Martini at their exciting symphony shows, as well as with pianist Hunter Noack in his beautiful In A Landscape: Classical Music in the Wild series. Additionally, in 2020, Katie and brilliant collaborative pianist Christine Eggert launched an international tour of their ground-breaking classical concert series, The Virtuosa Society, highlighting the compositions of talented women throughout history as well as serving as a launching pad for the advocacy of more female-composed pieces to be regularly programmed by major symphony orchestras and opera companies.
In 2010, Katie’s voice was featured on the small screen with a principal role as a singer in an episode of HBO’s dramatic series Big Love, and in 2019 Katie was featured with pianist Claire Wachter in The Virtual Piano Master Course’s exploration of Debussy’s art songs for voice and piano.
“There was an outstanding guest artist on Friday evening’s performance, and that was the soprano, Katie Harman. Please notice that I called her the “soprano, Katie Harman.” In the publicity for this concert, and in the program, much to do is made of the fact that Katie Harman was 2002’s Miss America. There is absolutely no question that Katie Harman, through the Miss America program, has done much good for the United States and the world...but I would like to make it clear that Katie Harman is truly a musician and a singer first. I was absolutely astonished at the way she sang. She has an incredible sense of pitch, and she has the vocal production technique and ear to always be on pitch. She also has a beautiful soprano voice, and when she sings, she demonstrates the musicianship that accompanies the rest of her ability. And (are you ready for this?),
she has great diction.”
Crowned Miss America 2002 in the days following the horrific terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Katie Harman’s reign set her apart, as did her performance of a beloved Puccini aria to clinch the title.
Katie’s official duties as Miss America helped shape her into a compassionate, service-driven woman. In the wake of 9-11 she traveled the nation 20,000 miles a month, meeting directly with rescue workers at Ground Zero and the Pentagon, family members of those lost in the attacks, military officials, the President and First Lady, government officials, and thousands upon thousands of concerned American citizens. In addition, she aimed the Miss America spotlight at supporting breast cancer patients and championing comprehensive cancer care, converging with patients, medical professionals, health care advocacy groups, pharmaceutical manufacturers, legislators, businesses, students, media entities, and many more. Her work as an advocate was featured by numerous media outlets, including The Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN with Paula Zahn, Late Night with David Letterman, People Magazine and The Washington Post, and was also honored by Fox Chase Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center, Metcalf Institute of Radiation Oncology, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, and the Cancer Research Foundation of America.
In the final months of her reign, Katie joined with all 50 State Titleholders of the 2001 Miss America Pageant to author and publish a joint memoir of their experiences in competition during 9-11, as well as the incredible acts of service they witnessed throughout post 9-11 America in the year following competition. Under the Crown has since become a best-loved book among pageant fans. Katie and the Class of 2001’s historic pageant experience was also featured on A&E Television’s 2011 documentary, "When Pop Culture Saved America."
With the scholarship assistance she earned from the Miss America Organization, Katie earned a Bachelor of Science in Communications from Portland State University (2005) and a Masters of Music Performance from Southern Oregon University (2017).