After completing her studies as a Peter Moores Scholar at the Royal Northern College of Music in the UK, Ali began her career as one of Simone Young’s Young Artists at Opera Australia before continuing as a principal soprano with the company performing over 26 roles, including Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Papagena (The Magic Flute), Ninette (Love of Three Oranges), Marcellina (Fidelio) , Yum Yum (The Mikado) & Adele (Die Fledermaus) and a Green Room award-winning Clorinda in Cenerentola. She performed Zerlina in Don Giovanni for NZ Opera, the title role of The Merry Widow for Melbourne Opera, and most recently, Desirée in A Little Night Music & The Fly in Happy End, both for Victorian Opera.
As an award-winning cabaret performer, she has performed everywhere from Glastonbury to Carnegie Hall and was Artistic Director of the Adelaide Cabaret Festival 2016-2018 as well as this year alongside all previous artistic directors. She was nominated for an ARIA award in 2014 for her children’s album Jazzamatazz! and, in 2015, was awarded a Green Room Award for her contribution to Cabaret. After successful seasons at Adelaide Cabaret Festival and the Sydney Opera House, Ali won a Helpmann Award for her cabaret show Yma Sumac – The Peruvian Songbird.
She has recently been at the forefront of a wave of new Australian opera, concept creating and starring in Lorelei for Victorian Opera that went on to have a return season in Melbourne as well as a season with Opera Queensland in 2021. After the success of this work she formed FLUXUS to create contemporary work for the operatic stage. She performed in the company’s debut opera, The Call, produced by Opera Queensland, with a libretto by Kate Miller Heidke and Keir Nuttall, and a score by Connor D’netto. The work was presented at the Brisbane Festival in 2022.
Ali is the recipient of the Australia Council Fellowship for 2023/24, which will see her working towards creating the FLUXUS Opera Lab, a framework for creating more contemporary Australian work for the operatic stage.