Born as Charlotte Maria Church in Llandaff, Cardiff, Wales on 21 February 1986. Her musical breakthrough came when she was just 11 years old, singing ‘Pie Jesu’ over the telephone in the TV show ‘This Morning’ on ITV in the UK. This was followed by a performance on ITV’s ‘Big, Big Talent Show’. She went on to sing at Rupert Murdoch’s wedding to Wendy Deng in 1999, and concerts at Cardiff Arms Park and the Royal Albert Hall. The albums ‘Voice Of An Angel’ (1998) and ‘Charlotte Church’ (1999) both went to the top 10 in the UK albums chart and were certified Platinum in the UK and the USA.
She continued her classically-inspired career with two further albums. At 16, she released a compilation album called ‘Prelude’ and took part in the Royal Christmas tour alongside Dame Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer. It marked the end of her classical music career.
In 2003, Church teamed up with trance music producer Jurgen Vries to sing vocals on his track ‘The Opera Song (Brave New World)’. She was credited on the records as CMC (her initials) as it was her first foray into pop music. The song reached number three in the UK Singles Chart, Church’s second highest charting single and Vries’ highest.
In 2005, Church issued her first pop album, ‘Tissues and Issues’. Four singles were taken from the album, all being moderately successful in the UK. The single ‘Even God Can’t Change The Past’ featured a previously unreleased track, a cover version of The Man With The Child In His Eyes. After this album, her contract with Sony ended and Church took some time out to try and focus on a television career, while also being pregnant with her daughter, Ruby Megan Henson, who was born on 20 September 2007.
In the summer of 2006, Church began work on her own entertainment TV show, ‘The Charlotte Church Show’. After a pilot episode which caused some controversy and which was never released to the public, the series began on 1 September 2006 on Channel 4. The show ended after its third series.
Having already published an autobiography called ‘Voice Of An Angel (My Life So Far)’ in 2000, she released a second autobiography called ‘Keep Smiling’ in 2007. On 11 January 2009, Church gave birth to a son, Dexter Lloyd Henson.
A year later, in October 2010, Church released the album ‘Back to Scratch’. The album was originally inspired ‘by problems facing a family member’, but Church admitted in a press release that the album’s title track had a resonance to her own personal life following the split from her husband Gavin Henson. It was announced on 13 March 2011 that Church had terminated her US$3 million deal with Power Amp Music over promotional disputes. Between 2012 and 2014, she released four EP’s with new tracks on the Alligator Wine Records label.
Church gave BBC 6 Music’s John Peel Lecture at The Lowry in Salford in 2013, in which she criticised the music industry for what she described as a culture of sexism that pressures female artists to project a sexualised image of themselves. Following Church’s appearance at the Leveson Inquiry, she became increasingly outspoken on a number of political issues, which she has explained as growing out of her experience of Leveson as well as the Conservative victory in the 2015 general election. She is a member of media campaigning group Hacked Off. In May 2015 she joined a demonstration organised by the People’s Assembly Against Austerity in Cardiff, subsequently addressing a crowd of 250,000 at a People’s Assembly march in London the following month. At the 2015 Glastonbury Festival she chaired a conversation with two members of Russian feminist punk band Pussy Riot. In September 2015, she endorsed Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign in the Labour Party leadership election, but by December 2015 she was calling for him to be replaced by a “fresh face” who was more electable. In 2016, Church along with numerous other celebrities, toured the UK to support Corbyn’s bid to become Prime Minister, and in March 2016, performed at a socialist fundraising event in Edinburgh for Corbyn. In May 2016, she declared her support for the Welsh Nationalist party, Plaid Cymru in the National Assembly for Wales election. In January 2017, she took part in a protest in Cardiff about Donald Trump’s inauguration as US president.