Charisa has been singing and performing for around 30 years. Her singing training began at 14 years old with Ron Ireland. Classically trained but with a passion for musical theatre, she joined the Northern Light Theatre Company and began her amateur performing career. She played many lead roles over 8 years, including Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, Roxy Hart in Chicago, Aldonza in Man of la Mancha and Annie in Annie Get Your Gun. Charisa was also a member of the Metropolitan Theatre Company and performed lead roles including Nanette in No, No Nanette.
Her love for singing and music led her into teaching where she worked at a private music school in the Northern Suburbs for several years before taking on a teaching role at Parafield Gardens High School. Charisa spent her days teaching and her evenings performing at venues around Adelaide.
Her strong desire to improve her skills drove her to pursue a university degree. In 1991 she completed a Bachelor of Arts in Musical Theatre at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). Charisa was also the first recipient of the Robert Finley Musical Theatre Award at her graduation, which acknowledged her outstanding contribution to the University where she performed at university functions and on television. Throughout her studies, Charisa continued to teach privately. When she graduated she relocated to Sydney and embarked on a professional Musical Theatre career which spanned over a period of more than 10 years.
Charisa’s classically trained voice offered her a variety of professional opportunities and she appeared in musicals such as South Pacific, Hello Dolly, West Side Story, My Fair Lady, Show Boat and many more. As a professional understudy Charisa performed the roles of Minnie Faye and Irene Molloy in Hello Dolly opposite Jill Perryman and Warren Mitchell. She played the role of Eliza in two seasons of My Fair Lady performing opposite Anthony Warlow and Joan Sydney. She has also worked with Hugh Jackman, Marina Prior, Todd McKenney, Denise Drysdale, Jackie Love and John Bowles. Her passion for Musical Theatre also led her to London’s West End where she lived for 2 years.
Charisa’s experience is not limited to music theatre, her love for singing has seen her join numerous choirs, both classical and modern. She has sung with live bands and was an original member of the all-female A Capella group Lips Inc. She has also written her own songs and performed in cabaret and appeared in a variety of small cooperative theatre pieces.
Since returning to Australia in 2002 Charisa has been working on her own little group of performers, her two children. She has spent time working with children with auditory processing disorders to develop their speech in conjunction with Dyslexia & Reading Solutions SA. Charisa is currently teaching singing at a range of Primary and secondary schools and she is currently completing her Masters of Teaching (Primary).
As a teacher, Charisa has utilised her varied professional experience and developed a teaching style that is both nurturing to young voices and strength building for those who wish to perform at a professional level. Charisa’s teaching plan focuses on strict singing and breathing techniques to ensure the natural voice is produced without strain or damage. Her BA and stage experience enables her to train each student in performance skills, acting and song interpretation. Her first-hand experience working as a professional means that she is able to guide and advise on the best avenues for a rewarding career as a professional singer or stage performer.