PHOTO CRED: DJENEBA ADUAYOM
Allison was born into a musical household, listening to jazz, bebop, Motown,blues, gospel, world music, classical, and funk at a very young age. She started singing in The Chicago Children's Choir, Church Youth Choirs & Kenwood Academy Concert Choir. Both choirs sent Allison to places like Carnegie Hall, Lyric Opera, and abroad to Scotland, England, Wales, and Switzerland, opening her to the universal language of music and song.
She received her B.M. in Voice-Opera at University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana. She had dreams to be the next Kathleen Battle as a Black coloratura soprano but her heart and fate led her to NYU (Steinhart) where she received her M.M in Musical Theater.
NYU theatre credits include VIOLET (Landlady,Lula) KING DAVID, CANDIDE, and THE GONDOLIERS. Her first Regional theatre credits include: BUBBLING BROWN SUGAR, DREAMGIRLS, THE WIZ.
After traveling with THE COLOR PURPLE National Tour as Squeak, she landed her first Broadway show as Nabulungi u/s, Swing in THE BOOK OF MORMON.
A year and a half later, she landed a role in MOTOWN THE MUSICAL on Broadway as Diana Ross u/s, which led her into her first lead role as Diana Ross on MOTOWN THE MUSIC Broadway (2016) and National Tour, which she is currently touring. She has received an NAACP Theater Award nomination and won Chicago Broadway World Award for Best Female Lead Actress as Diana Ross for Motown.
Favorite collaborations and concert milestones include singing with Motown & Music Legend Stevie Wonder in his "Songs in the Key of Life" concert and several works of composer Ted Hearne, including his acclaimed Katrina Ballads ("Ashley Nelson") & "You're Causing Quite A Disturbance" with Erykah Badu & Brooklyn Philharmonic.
Copyright Allison Semmes. All rights reserved.