Alisan Leigh Porter (born June 20, 1981) is an American singer, actress and dancer. As a child, Porter made acting appearances in Parenthood, Stella and I Love You to Death. Her breakout role came in 1991, when she played the lead in the film Curly Sue opposite Jim Belushi.
Porter in 2015
|Education||Staples High School, Connecticut|
|Years active||1987–present: actress |
2009–present: singer, songwriter
|Spouse(s)||Brian Autenrieth (m. 2012; div. 2017)|
|Associated acts||Alisan & Ilsey, The Canyons, Adam Lambert, Christina Aguilera|
As an adult, Porter pursued roles in musical theatre, including a run in The Ten Commandments: The Musical & as an original cast member of the Broadway revival of A Chorus Line. A solo album followed in 2009. In 2016, she auditioned for NBC's The Voice, earning a spot on Team Christina Aguilera. In May of that same year, Porter was announced the winner of season 10.
Life and career
Born to Jewish parents in Worcester, Massachusetts, Porter is the great-granddaughter of prominent Worcester rabbi Joseph Klein. Her grandmother ran the Charlotte Klein Dance Center. Porter's father, Ric Porter, was co-founder, lead singer, and songwriter of the Worcester-based band Zonkaraz. Her mother, Laura Klein, also taught dance, coaching Diane and Elaine Klimaszewski, who appeared on Star Search in 1987 in the junior dance category before they became known as the Coors Light Twins. While in Los Angeles for the twins' appearance on Star Search, the show's producer heard Porter singing in the hotel lobby and booked her to appear on the next episode. Porter has been singing and performing since age three; at age five, she became the youngest Star Search participant ever to win the competition. That same year, she also appeared on Pee Wee's Playhouse as one of the playhouse gang in Season 2.
Porter acted in several films as a child; she became known for playing the title role in the 1991 movie Curly Sue opposite Jim Belushi. On television, she played the youngest daughter of Lynn Redgrave on the short-lived ABC sitcom Chicken Soup in 1989. The following year, she was slated to be a new regular cast member on Perfect Strangers, but her character was dropped after only one episode.
Porter continued acting at Staples High School in Westport, Connecticut, where she joined a theater group and participated in various shows. While a freshman, Porter portrayed Anita in West Side Story, and as a senior played the lead in Cinderella. After Porter won The Voice in 2016, her former high school drama teacher said she was not surprised by the result. "She blew everybody away" with her performance in West Side Story, and "really seemed to get the best out of everybody else. Her energy rubbed off on everybody. She inspired others."
When she was 18 years old, Porter moved to New York to audition for Broadway shows. She was cast as Urleen in the show Footloose. Following her move to Los Angeles, Porter starred as Miriam in The Ten Commandments: The Musical at the Kodak Theater alongside Val Kilmer, Adam Lambert and Broadway star Lauren Kennedy. Variety called her performance of "Light of a New Day" "superb".
In 2003, the band The Raz was formed, with Porter as the vocalist and main songwriter. The Raz split up in 2004. In March 2005, she announced the birth of her new band, The Alisan Porter Project. During 2006, she performed in the revival of A Chorus Line as Bebe Bensonheimer at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre in New York City. On October 9, 2009, her independent debut album Alisan Porter was released.
Porter sang the National Anthem at the 2016 A Capitol Fourth special on July 3 at the U.S. Capitol West Lawn in Washington, D.C. The special was broadcast on PBS. She also sang the anthem prior to the nationally televised Sunday Night Football game in Oakland, CA on November 6, 2016.
The Voice (2016)
On February 29, 2016, she became a contestant on season 10 of The Voice and sang "Blue Bayou" for her blind audition performance. All four coaches – Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, and Pharrell Williams – turned their chairs for her and she chose Aguilera as her coach. In the battle rounds, Porter was up against Lacy Mandigo with the song "California Dreamin'" by The Mamas & the Papas as a rock version. In the knockout rounds, Porter beat Daniel Passino. Porter went on to sing through the live shows, advancing via public vote every week up to the finals, where she performed her original song "Down That Road". On May 24, 2016, Porter was crowned the season 10 winner of The Voice. She also helped make The Voice US history as the first artist to win the show with a female coach, giving Aguilera her first win as a coach.
- ← Studio version reached the top 10 on iTunes.
|Blind Audition||"Blue Bayou"||Linda Ronstadt||Feb 29||1.11||All four chairs turned;|
joined Team Christina
|Battles (Top 48)||"California Dreamin'" (vs. Lacy Mandigo)||The Mamas and The Papas||March 21||8.9||Saved by Coach|
|Knockouts (Top 32)||"River" (vs. Daniel Passino)||Joni Mitchell||March 28||10.5|
|Live Playoffs (Top 24)||"Cry Baby"||Janis Joplin||April 11||14.12||Saved by Public Vote|
|Live Top 12||"Stone Cold"||Demi Lovato||April 18||17.9|
|Live Top 11||"Stay with Me Baby"||Lorraine Ellison||April 25||19.6|
|Live Top 10||"Let Him Fly"||Patty Griffin||May 2||21.9|
|Live Top 9||"Cryin'"||Aerosmith||May 9||23.8|
|Live Top 8 (Semifinals)||"Desperado"||Eagles||May 16||25.4|
|Live Final 4 (Finale)||"Down That Road" (original song)||Porter||May 23||26.2||Winner|
|"You've Got a Friend" (with Christina Aguilera)||James Taylor||26.6|
|"Somewhere"||West Side Story||26.12|
|Bryan Bautista, Nick Hagelin, Tamar Davis, Kata Hay, and Ryan Quinn||"Stars"||Grace Potter and the Nocturnals|
|Christina Aguilera, Bryan Bautista, & Nick Hagelin||"Live and Let Die"||Paul McCartney & Wings|
|Adam Wakefield||"Angel from Montgomery"||Bonnie Raitt & John Prine|
|Paxton Ingram, Kata Hay and Ryan Quinn||"Straight On"||Heart|
|Jennifer Nettles||"Unlove You"||Jennifer Nettles|
Since December 2008, Porter is a contributing columnist for movmnt magazine. Porter created a closed Facebook page for mothers called Lil' Mamas and then, in 2012, a related blog website of the same name that she runs with her business partner, Celia Behar.
On March 10, 2012, Porter married Brian Autenrieth, a fruit exporter and former child soap opera actor, in California. The couple have two children: son Mason Blaise (b. July 17, 2012) and daughter Aria Sage Autenrieth (b. May 8, 2014). On December 18, 2017, Porter announced on Twitter that the couple had separated in March. She said, "In a sad and honest note Brian and I ended our relationship in March. We remain close friends and are committed to always doing our best for our amazing kids."
|1990||Stella||Jenny Claire (age 8)|
|1990||I Love You to Death||Carla Boca|
|1991||Curly Sue||Curly Sue|
|2006||The Ten Commandments: The Musical||Miriam|
|2008||Meet Dave||A Chorus Line Dancer|
|2008||Every Little Step||Herself|
|1987||Pee-wee's Playhouse||Li'l Punkin||season 2|
|1987||I'll Take Manhattan||Young Maxi||Miniseries|
|1987||Family Ties||Child||Episode: "Miracle in Columbus"|
|1987||A Beverly Hills Christmas||Herself||Television film|
|1989–90||Chicken Soup||Molly Peerce||12 episodes|
|1990||Perfect Strangers||Tess Holland||Episode: "New Kid on the Block"|
|1990||When You Remember Me||Kelly||Movie|
|1991||The Golden Girls||Melissa||Episode: "Beauty and the Beast"|
|2001||Undressed||Belinda||Season 4 episodes|
|2016||The Voice||Herself / Artist||Season 10 winner|
|Title||Details||Peak chart positions|
|Who We Are||20|
|Title||Details||Peak chart positions|
|I Come in Pieces||
|Album||Details||Peak chart positions|
|The Complete Season 10 Collection
(The Voice Performance)
|US Country Digital
(with Lacy Mandigo)
|"Stay with Me Baby"||—||—||—||—||—|
|"Let Him Fly"||—||34||—||—||—|
|"You've Got a Friend"
(with Christina Aguilera)
|"Down That Road"||100||20||—||—||—||62,000+|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart|
Porter co-wrote the following songs:
- Adam Lambert – For Your Entertainment (2009)
- Aftermath (Adam Lambert, Alisan Porter, Ferras, Ely Rise)
- Scarlett Cherry – Labor of Love (2011)
- Angel (Alisan Porter, Ely Rise, Scarlett Cherry, Lee Cherry, Guy Baruch)
- Sleep Until You Dream (Alisan Porter, IIsey Juber, Jordan Lawhead, Scarlett Cherry, Lee Cherry)
- Never Knew Love (Alisan Porter, Ely Rise, Scarlett Cherry, Lee Cherry)
Porter appears on the 2006 Revival Cast Recording of A Chorus Line, portraying Bebe Benzenheimer, whom she also portrayed on Broadway.
Awards and nominations
|1992||Young Artist Awards||Best Young Actress Guest Starring or Recurring Role in a TV Series||The Golden Girls||Nominated|
|1993||Best Young Actress Starring in a Motion Picture||Curly Sue||Won|
- Donelson, Marcy. "Alisan Porter – Biography by Marcy Donelson". AllMusic. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Gold, Sylviane (October 1, 2006). "On the rise: Alisan Porter born to play Chorus Line's Bebe". Dance Magazine. Retrieved June 6, 2016 – via The Free Library.
- Duckett, Richard (June 8, 2006). "Following in mother's dance-steps". Telegram & Gazette. Worcester, Massachusetts. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Williamson, Dianne (June 5, 2016). "Zonkaraz still feels the love". Telegram & Gazette. Worcester, Massachusetts. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Turner, Jonathan (May 25, 2016). "Retired Moline teacher recalls The Voice winner". The Dispatch / The Rock Island Argus. Moline, Illinois. Retrieved May 26, 2016 – via QCOnline.
- Wynter, Dontei (May 25, 2016). "The Voice 2016 Winner Alisan Porter: 5 Facts to Know about Her". EarnTheNecklace.com. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Hirschhorn, Joel (September 28, 2004). "Review: The Ten Commandments". Variety. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter Album & Song Chart History – Folk Albums". Billboard. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Ramos, Dino-Ray (November 1, 2017). "'The Voice: Neon Dreams' Set To Open In Las Vegas With Former Contestants". Deadline. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
- Norwin, Alyssa (March 6, 2016). "The Voice Recap: Christina Aguilera Is Back With A Vengeance As Season 10 Begins". Hollywoodlife.com. Retrieved March 6, 2016.
- Bentley, Jean (February 29, 2016). "The Voice's Tenth Season Kicks Off With Some Truly Outstanding Blind Auditions". E! Online. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
- Mizoguchi, Karen (March 1, 2016). "Curly Sue's Alisan Porter Nails Her Voice Blind Audition, Joins Team Xtina". People. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
- Nessif, Bruna (September 11, 2014). "Curly Sue Star Alisan Porter Reveals Past Alcohol and Drug Addiction". E! Online. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Cosgrove Baylis, Sheila (September 11, 2014). "Curly Sue Actress Alisan Porter Admits to Being an Alcoholic". People. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- Porter, Alisan (December 2008). "The Truth about Alisan Porter". movmnt. Archived from the original on April 12, 2009. Retrieved April 5, 2009.
- "About Us". Lil' Mamas. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
- DiLuna, Amy (December 21, 2016). "Moms commit random acts of kindness in honor of San Bernardino victim". Today. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
- Garcia, Jennifer (March 11, 2012). "Curly Sue Star Alisan Porter Gets Married". People. Retrieved March 12, 2012.
- Porter, Alisan (December 18, 2017). "In a sad and honest note Brian and I ended our relationship in March. We remain close friends and are committed to always doing our best for our amazing kids. Thank you for the support and have a beautiful holiday. Xo A". @alisanporter. Retrieved December 19, 2017.
- "Alisan Porter by Alisan Porter". iTunes. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- "Who We Are by Alisan Porter". iTunes. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter - Chart History Billboard". Billboard. Retrieved June 11, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter Album & Song Chart History – Billboard Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved June 1, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter Album & Song Chart History – Digital Songs". Billboard. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter Album & Song Chart History – Country Songs". Billboard. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter – Chart History Billboard Country Digital". Billboard. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
- "Alisan Porter Album & Song Chart History – Rock Songs". Billboard. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
- https://www.discogs.com/Marvin-Hamlisch-Edward-Kleban-A-Chorus-Line-The-New-Cast-Recording/release/7601259%7C A Chorus Line: The New Cast Recording on Discogs. Retrieved Oct. 6, 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Alisan Porter.|
|Awards and achievements|
| The Voice (American)
"Climb Ev'ry Mountain"
| The Voice
"Down That Road"
"Darlin' Don't Go"