Forbes performs in a 2006 concert with Pink Martini.
April 29, 1970 |
|Associated acts||Pink Martini|
Life and career
Forbes was born and raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her father, Cameron Forbes, is American of French/Scottish descent, and her mother is African American. She attended Phillips Exeter Academy ('88), then studied visual arts at Harvard University, where she met fellow student Thomas Lauderdale, a classically-trained pianist. They became friends and met regularly to play music together.
After graduating from Harvard in 1992, where she won the Jonathan Levy Prize for acting, Forbes worked as an actress for several years, performing off-Broadway in New York. She then became a musician, forming a band and recording a solo album. She sang the title song ("Ordinary Girl") for the late 1990s television series Clueless and the version of "Que Sera Sera" used over the opening and closing credits of Jane Campion's 2003 film In the Cut.
Lauderdale, who by then was living in Portland, Oregon, asked her to sing with Pink Martini, a band he had assembled to play at political fundraisers in Portland. After three years, she moved to Portland in 1998 to work full-time with the band.
Apart from her efforts with Pink Martini, Forbes has released two solo albums:
- Love Handle (1995)
- 78 (2008, Heinz Records)
On June 21, 2011 Pink Martini announced that China was taking an extended leave of absence from performing for at least one year to undergo surgery on her vocal cords. Guest vocalists were scheduled to fill in for China during her absence. Forbes is thanked in the liner notes to 1969, the band's collaboration with Japanese vocalist Saori Yuki.
China Forbes is a cousin of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
- Meet the Band from the Pink Martini website
- Speaking in tongues, an April 2005 article about Forbes and Pink Martini from the Guardian
- Feinstein Comes Full Swing to Capitol-Era Sinatra
- Toast of the Nation Pink Martini: An Eclectic Splash Of Strings http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=98913917