Kate Miller-Heidke
Kate Miller-Heidke Dan Gray

Kate Miller-Heidke busy with album release, tours, shows

WE'VE all heard the stories of crazed fans stalking celebrities, sending them weird packages or long and slightly disturbing messages of devotion.

But it's not usually some in the media who is the stalker.

We journalists like to think we are above that sort of behavior. We're professionals, after all.

Apparently not all of us, as songstress Kate Miller-Heidke assures me.

She has called me directly - unusual for an artist of her calibre.

Usually these sorts of interviews are set up through a conferencing centre.

But Miller-Heidke no longer feels comfortable with conference calls.

"Well, there was this conferencing-call guy a while back who set up a day of interviews I had," she begins to explain.

"Then he went a little bit crazy, texting me all the time. I guess he felt he knew me after listening in on my conversations for six hours.

"I prefer to just call myself these days."

It's been a busy 12 months for Miller-Heidke.

She released her third studio album, Nightflight, to critical acclaim, completed two national tours as well as a handful of dates in Europe and a headline tour across the US as well as the support for Ben Folds in huge stadium shows.

She also found the time to perform a principal role in The Death of Klinghoffer with the English National Opera.

She returned to sing again with the English National Opera earlier this year in the world premiere of Sunken Garden, a sci-fi opera written by Michel Van der and David Mitchell - the bestselling author of Cloud Atlas.

But despite starring in the production, Miller-Heidke never physically graced the stage.

"It's a 3D-integrated live opera," she said.

Before opening night, she filmed her part as an art-school dropout with a dark secret and she appeared as a three-dimensional character beside the live performers, with the audience given special glasses to watch the show.

She's performed dozens of times previously but she was intrigued to actually sit in the audience and be able to watch her own performance.

"I'm really, really nervous. I'll probably need a few stiff drinks beforehand," she said before the performance which debuted earlier this month.

"Not many artists can say they have sat in on their own performance."

The classically trained singer's career has often danced between opera and pop music.

"As an artist, you get inspired to try different things," she said.

"But pop music is my greatest love. It will always be.

"I would be miserable without it.

"But it's lovely to be able to perform other people's music. I find it very inspiring.

"I've also loved the theatre as well."

The 31-year-old singer is in the early stages of writing her own work for Opera Australia but says it will take another year to finish.

She is working on songs for her next album which she says will be far more joyous than her last record which covered themes of death, isolation and loneliness.

"It is a relief after ballads about death," she said.

"This one will be more about life and love.

"Writing happy songs does make you happier."

Catch Kate Miller-Heidke on her 21-stop regional Australia tour.

Miller-Heidke will perform at Caloundra RSL on Saturday, June 1.

Tickets available from www.caloundrarsl.com.au.