She is Australia’s beloved musical treasure. With a career spanning five decades, Marcia Hines has released 22 albums, selling 2.6 million copies and has garnered countless chart-topping singles and multi-platinum albums. She was the first, and only, Australian female artist to have seven consecutive top 20 album releases.
Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Marcia first sang as a nine-year-old in her local church choir and at aged 14 won a scholarship to the prestigious New England Conservatory of Music. After a visit to the legendary Woodstock music festival she returned to Boston and resigned the scholarship, realising that a classical singing career was not for her.
At 16 Marcia auditioned for Australian producer Harry M. Miller and director Jim Sharman who were visiting the US to audition singers for their Australian production of Hair. The rest is Australian music history. The youngest person ever cast into Hair, Marcia arrived in Sydney in 1970, already pregnant with daughter Deni and never looked back.
In the summer of 1973 Miller and Sharman approached her to play Mary Magdalene in their Australian production of Jesus Christ Superstar and it is this role that established her as a major star in Australia. After Superstar, Marcia joined the jazz orchestra ‘Daly-Wilson Big Band’, toured the world and appeared on the album ‘Daly-Wilson Big Band Featuring Marcia Hines’.
A record contract with Wizard Records in 1974 led to Marcia’s first album, ‘Marcia Shines’, that featured her first solo single, a cover version of James Taylor’s ‘Fire and Rain’. The next ten years saw the release of the albums ‘Shining’, ‘Ladies and Gentlemen’, ‘Ooh Child’, ‘Take it from the Boys’, ‘Jokers and Queens’ (with Jon English) and ‘Love Sides’. 16 more albums have followed since that first amazing decade. There have been 15 top ten singles and a career that has taken Marcia to success around the world. She has always called Australia home and in 2007 was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame and then in 2009 was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia.
Marcia Hines was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1986 and continues (to this day) to administer herself with daily injections of insulin. Her commitment to diet and fitness is legendary. She has chosen over the years to support charities such as the Bobbie Goldsmith Foundation, the Charlie Teo Foundation, many diabetes research organisations, and the Save the Children Fund.
Her theatre credits include Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, Big River, Are You Lonesome Tonight?, and Jerry’s Girls.
It was the ABC’s popular TV music show Countdown that helped establish Marcia as the recording artist and concert performer that she eventually became and these appearances led to two television series for the ABC titled Marcia Hines Music in 1979 and then in 2003, her role as a judge on Australian Idol. The seven-year success story of Australian Idol, with Marcia uniformly recognised as the ‘singer-friendly judge’, helped propel her career well into the 21st century.
The hit fringe festival stage production Velvet began in Adelaide in 2015 and has travelled the world with Marcia in the starring role and has spawned any number of audience attendees to wearing bellbottoms and platform heels!
2018 saw Marcia joining forces with John Paul Young, Brian Cadd, Leo Sayer and Russell Morris for the APIA Good Times Tour, a month-long concert journey around Australia that played to sold-out houses everywhere it went.
And so to 2019, and more exciting opportunities! The Sydney Festival, in January, presented the world premiere of a new Spiegeltent production titled Pigalle. Featuring iOTA and Waangenga Blanco from the Bangarra Dance Company, along with a cast of global circus and burlesque stars, Marcia appeared as one of the central characters. Then in April, at the Lyric Theatre in Sydney, Marcia took to the stage as the ‘Diva’ in the Gordon Frost production of Saturday Night Fever.
She shows no signs of letting up! Marcia is currently touring her show, Disco Inferno and then towards the end of the year goes into rehearsals for Shrek the Musical opening in January 2020. This lavish multi-million dollar musical features Marcia in a special guest appearance as The Dragon.
A musician, an amazing singer, and a beloved member of the Australian music and theatre community. In her own words, “There are still many rivers to cross!”