Canadian singer Celine Dion, known for her superhit track My Heart Will Go On, turns 44 today.
Dion emerged as a teen star in the French-speaking world after her manager and future husband René Angélil mortgaged his home to finance her first record. In 1990, she released the English-language album Unison, establishing herself as a viable pop artist in North America and other English-speaking areas of the world.
Dion first gained international recognition in the 1980s by winning both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest. Following a series of French albums in the early 1980s, she signed on to CBS Records Canada in 1986.
During the 1990s, with the help of Angélil, she achieved worldwide fame after signing with Epic Records and releasing several English albums along with additional French albums, becoming one of the most successful artists in pop music history.Her album Let's Talk About Love was a major success for Dion, reaching number-one all over the world, attaining platinum status in twenty-four sales territories, and becoming Dion's fastest selling album of her career. The most successful single from the album became the classically influenced ballad My Heart Will Go On, which was written and composed by James Horner and Will Jennings, and produced by Horner and Walter Afanasieff.
Serving as the love theme for the 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, the song topped the charts across the world, and became Dion's signature song as well as winning the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Original Song. The song also gave Dion two Grammy Awards for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and the most coveted Record of the Year.
However, in 1999 at the height of her success, Dion announced a hiatus from entertainment in order to start a family and spend time with her husband, who had been diagnosed with cancer.She returned to the top of pop music in 2002 and signed a three-year (later extended to almost five years) contract to perform nightly in a five-star theatrical show at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas.
Dion's music has been influenced by genres ranging from rock and R&B to gospel and classical. While her releases have often received mixed critical reception, she is renowned for her technically skilled and powerful vocals.
In 2004, after surpassing 175 million in album sales worldwide, she was presented with the Chopard Diamond Award at the World Music Awards for becoming the best-selling female artist of all time. According to Sony Music Entertainment, Dion has sold over 200 million albums worldwide.(Inputs from Wikipedia)