Katharine McPhee: Snapshot

Name
Katharine McPhee
Date of Birth
March 25, 1984
Birth Place
Los Angeles, Calif.
Having that gorgeous girl-next-door charm – oh, and serious vocal talent – helped season five American Idol runner-up Katharine McPhee stay in the limelight past her given 15 minutes of ''McPheever.''

Although the L.A. beauty lost the Idol crown to gray-haired blues singer Taylor Hicks in 2006, she did walk away with a record deal and many headlines: for marrying producer Nick Cokas, who is 19 years her senior; battling bulimia; and releasing two well-received albums.

McPhee, who made her film debut in the hit comedy The House Bunny, returned to TV in 2012 as the star of NBC's musical series Smash, which ran for two seasons. In May 2014, after a yearlong separation from Cokas, McPhee filed for divorce.

Katharine McPhee: Video

Star Talk

For "Love Story," Katharine McPhee reveals a hot dance track – and an even hotter costar! (See more at Yahoo! Music Videos.)

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Katharine McPhee: Five Fun Facts

  1. When Katharine McPhee was asked in 2007 whether she watches the show that made her a household name, the American Idol alum told In Style, "I'd rather watch the Lakers."
  2. "Meeting Whitney Houston was huge for me," Katharine McPhee told PEOPLE. "I sang her hit ''I Have Nothing'' and I was so nervous. She was so sweet. She told me, 'Girl, you really made me proud.'"
  3. Katharine McPhee kept her sense of humor when her first single, ''Over It'' peaked at a lackluster No. 21 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. "Let's just face it: Now that the first single is pretty much over, I can now say that that wasn't my favorite song," she told Pennsylvania's Morning Call newspaper.
  4. The secret to Katharine McPhee's creamy complexion? "I've been seeing the same aesthetician since I was 10," she revealed. "In high school, skin care was one of my personal hobbies."
  5. In 2007, Katharine McPhee was voted No. 2 on FHM's Sexiest Woman in the World poll. It drew 8 million votes, making McPhee a runner-up to Jessica Alba.

Katharine McPhee: Biography

2005

Katharine McPhee

August 18

Auditioning for Idol

On the urging of her boyfriend, McPhee auditions for the fifth season of American Idol in San Francisco, where she sings a soulful rendition of "God Bless the Child." Judges Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson give her a ticket to L.A., where she gives her devotees the ''McPheever'' with her stunning brunette looks and stellar voice. Eventually, McPhee makes it to the finals, battling gray-haired blues singer Taylor Hicks for the title.

2006

Katharine McPhee

May 24

Running Up to Hicks

With 63.4 million people casting their vote, McPhee loses the title of American Idol to Hicks. But McPhee doesn't leave empty-handed: she wins a Ford Mustang convertible, releases her best-selling double-A sided single "Over the Rainbow" / "My Destiny," and signs a record deal with music mogul Clive Davis.

Katharine McPhee

July 03

Secretly Fighting Bulimia

McPhee opens up to PEOPLE about her five-year struggle with bulimia. "I'd been conscious of body image at a young age, and I went through phases of exercising compulsively and starving myself," she tells PEOPLE. "Food was my crutch; it was how I dealt with emotions and uncomfortable situations." After qualifying for American Idol in October 2005, she enrolled at L.A.'s Eating Disorder Center of California, where she spent three months undergoing therapy and healthily learned to lose a reported 30 lbs.

Read More on Katharine McPhee's Life

Photo Credits

BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): Ray Mickshaw/WireImage; Vinvi Bucci/Getty; Bauer Griffin

Edited by Julia Wang

Katharine McPhee

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