Sounds & Rhythm
The Australian Sensation
SHE started performing at 7, she won Arias in her 20s, she sang at the Olympics in her 30s and then she conquered Europe! Born in 1967, the Australian Singer Tina Arena who is also a songwriter and theatre actress is a mega star, a household name too. She has an extraordinary career in the music industry being in the spotlight for more than 4 decades.
Arena began her career as a 7-year-old, singing live on Australia's longest running variety television show, Young Talent Time. Even as a young girl she was known for her powerful voice and stage presence “There's a lot to be said about extraordinary apprenticeship, and young talent time definitely was one.”
After a couple of years, Arena broke the stigma of a TV childhood and carved out a successful solo career with Columbia Records. The David Tyson-produced Don't Ask was Australia's biggest selling album of 1995, and the biggest selling album by any Australian female to date.
The follow-up album, In Deep, produced by Foreigner's Mick Jones, was also a multi-platinum success. The singles "I Want to Know What Love Is" and "Burn" even had minor success in some U.S. airplay charts and Arena's songwriting abilities were particularly well noted in Nashville where a number of pedigreed country music artists have since covered her songs.
Arena's collaboration with Marc Anthony, "I Want to Spend My Lifetime Loving You", from the Mask of Zorro soundtrack, gave her a new kind of European success, tipping the scales of her success in France where both the song and the movie became Top 10 hits.
Regardless of her recording achievements, musical theatre has always remained more than just a sideline for Arena. Her performance in the Australian production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, while still in her teens, was applauded by the show's producer, Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Arena's sixth studio album titled Songs of Love & Loss was released on 1 December 2007. The record was primarily made up of torch songs originally recorded by women in the 1960s and 70s. August 2008 saw Arena performing with Andrea Bocelli during his Australian tour.
She met her partner Vincent in Paris. “He did not speak English and I spoke very little French, but then I guess it was the desire to communicate, which a lot of people would think of as a perfect relationship!” she said. They have a daughter named Gabriel, “It's an enormous responsibility, it has brought everything into a complete perspective and now I know my priorities, my family is everything for me.” In an interview with Sunrise News, Melbourne, Tina reminisced her old days in her home town and said how much she misses the humor of the town. When asked how she has managed her career without letting the media or anything shake her spirits she said, “It is what it is, I don't intellectualize it, I go in and do the best that I can. I do work that I want to do and with people I want to work with.”
In an industry that's both demanding and profoundly superficial Tina Arena has done great of herself and feels very proud to be able to stand up to the demands.