Formerly Obese Musician & Actress Using Her Story To Inspire Other Women

I recently met a musician and actress by the name of Katja Glieson. Some of you may have already heard about her and some may not. I had the chance to sit down with her and chat about her career, but what fascinated me most, and the reason why we wanted to share her story with GirlTalkHQ readers, was her life experiences which she is using to inspire others. While she is a talented artist, Katja is a girl who is using her creativity as a vehicle to spread some important messages for women out there.

Katja grew up in Melbourne, Australia and always dreamed of Hollywood, and is passionate about songwriting and creating good music. Her music icons include Michael Jackson, Gwen Stefani, Bette Midler, Roy Orbison and Britney Spears to name but a few.

She started her music career in Australia, but was pigeon-holed in the bubblegum pop world there which she didn’t really like. The decision to try her luck in Hollywood was the wider scope of opportunities and songwriters in different genres which exist here. She has been in numerous indie features in Australia and has toured with theater groups. Her love of music and creative ambitions led her to where she is today, but it wasn’t always an easy road for her.

The thing about Katja is, while she may not be splashed across every Access Hollywood bulletin and Cosmo mag cover just yet, she is in this for all the right reasons.

katja_hat_serious_sml

Growing up she didn’t come from a rich family and her school career was fraught with bullying and other issues. Katja’s family were considered low-income, and as a result her parents never really encouraged her to “follow her dreams” but to find a stable job and think practically instead. She was teased for being Obese. (Yes, I know that is hard to believe looking at any of these pictures!) But at her lowest point she was 200lbs and became suicidal. She used self-harm measures, developed eating disorders, and body image issues. Katja tried therapy to heal all her wounds but it did not help.

katja_dad_age13

katja_mum_age9

In high school she had no friends. “I was called Katja Fat-ya, and S27, because the bullies came up with 27 words beginning with ‘S’ they could tease me with” she says with a light hearted shake of her head. She was bullied by a group of girls, and her only real friend in school was a music teacher. Even at this trying stage of her life she knew she had ambitions for a music and film career.

The tipping point for Katja after school was realizing that to fulfill those ambitions, she had to get healthy. Having those dreams in the first place, essentially, was what saved her. She didn’t follow the practical advice of her parents and decided to go after her creative aspirations. The only asset she had on her side was determination and hard work. Both these attributes are the very thing that is allowing her to continue with her music career, move to another country and create new opportunities for herself.

Don’t just think Katja is another pop artist trying to fit into a certain stereotype. Sure her music has a more urban edge with a full injection of driving pop and catchy hooks. But she says the real reason she wants to be a successful artist is to help others, especially other girls.

“Being successful in music would allow me a much bigger platform and the ability to help others. In my eyes there is no point in doing something like this if you don’t want to help others.” Katja also says helping others gives her the motivation and fulfillment to keep trying different things in music.

There are many pop artists today who could just be another single on the charts, but in reality if you delve deeper their lyrics, their pain, and their stories are what is driving them. They too are using music as a heavily saturated medium to share their experiences with others. Pink, Kelly Clarkson, Christina Aguilera are a few very well-known ladies who have experienced some major issues in their lives but have found the strength and motivation to keep going, knowing that using their talents for good is their responsibility. Their fans are dealing with the same hurts and brokenness, but to know these artists have gone through it too and can give strength and comfort to someone is very special.

Katja_jumpsuit_

It is a unique platform that only musicians have, and if utilized in the right way will ensure creative longevity. Being genuine is the key and that is one of Katja’s assets. “A lot of the time when people are in the middle of a situation that seems hopeless they can’t see a way out, so I want to be able to use my music as a way out for them.” she explains confidently.

But she also wants her fans and friends to know that they too have the power to change their situations. We have to take responsibility for ourselves and our emotions. If all human beings go through hard times, the difference in those who come out on top and those who don’t is how you look at them. What have you learned from it? And how do you keep on growing?

Katja is living proof of someone who was able to drastically change her own situation. Going from a 200lb, suicidal lonely girl to someone who was able to get healthy, pursue her dreams and not allow her income status to hold her back shows she has the makings to help and inspire others. It also shows complete healing on her behalf, because years later she decided to get in contact with her old school bullies and make peace with them.

“One of the main perpetrators who was like a Regina from ‘Mean Girls’ made up with me when I contacted her on facebook, and there are no hard feelings anymore. I also found out her parents treated her really badly growing up which was probably why she was so mean.” Interactions like this is what makes Katja’s story and career authentic and gives it purpose.

Her female role models are Gwen Stefani for her individuality and quirkiness, Miranda Kerr for promoting a healthy body image and Portia De Rossi who also overcame an eating disorder and was willing to be vulnerable about her experience in a tell-all book.

Katja Recording

Whether you are an aspiring actress, musician, teacher, writer, philanthropist, politician, etc, the message is the same: you are who you are for a reason and your journey is unique to you. The experiences you have gone through can either break you or be used to better yourself and help others, the choice is yours.

“You have to get to a point where you aren’t angry anymore.” Katja tells me emphatically, in a tone of voice that shows me she knows what she is talking about.

Her journey is an exciting story which I am proud to share with you all and I know will only go from strength to strength. Her music clearly shows a young woman who is fiercely passionate about who she is and where she comes from. She loves to create stories and characters in her music and have a bit of fun with it. She uses her lyrics and art as a way to communicate her messages. The single from Katja Glieson, Agent of Pop, which you must check out is called “Manhunter” and you can watch the newly released music video on her website. Sign up to exclusively view her work!

To see more of Katja’s music and get in touch with her, you can visit www.katjaglieson.com, @katjaglieson or www.facebook.com/katjaglieson.

 

asha_katja asha_katja2

 

6 Comments

  1. Pingback: Bullying & Obesity | Katja Glieson

  2. Sheetal Sundaray says:

    Inspirational ?♥️

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.