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Monday, September 17, 2007

Celine Dion

Céline Marie Claudette Dion, OC, OQ, (born March 30, 1968) is a Canadian pop singer and occasional songwriter. Born to a large, impoverished family in Charlemagne, Quebec, Dion became a young star in Francophone Canada after her manager and future husband René Angélil mortgaged his home to finance her first record. She later gained recognition in parts of Europe and Asia after she won both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest. Her first English language album Unison, released in 1990, established her as a viable pop artist in the English-speaking world.

During the 1990s, under the guidance of her husband, Dion achieved worldwide fame and success with several English and French records, and ended the decade as one of the most successful artists in pop music.

However, after releasing over twenty-five albums during the 1980s and 1990s, Dion announced a temporary retraction from entertainment in 1999 in order to start a family and spend time with her husband. She returned to the music scene in 2002, and a year later, she signed a four-year 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 various genres, which range from pop and rock to gospel and classical, and while her releases have often been given mixed critical reception, she is renowned for her technically skilled and powerful vocals. In 2004, after accumulating record sales in excess of 175 million, she was presented with the Chopard Diamond Award from the World Music Awards show for becoming the Best-selling Female Artist in the World. In April 2007 Sony BMG announced that Celine Dion had sold over 200 million albums worldwide.

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