The chances are you have heard a Celine Dion song over the years. Whether she is standing on the tip of the Titanic with her amazing ballads or even performing the soundtrack for the new Deadpool movie, you can’t deny the icon has had an amazing career. The award-winning superstar has just turned 50 and shows no signs of slowing down. Join us as we break down some of the biggest ups and downs over her life – including love, loss, and the strength to overcome life’s challenges.
Celine Dion was born on March 30, 1968, in Charlemagne, a small town in Quebec, Canada. Perhaps one of Canada’s biggest exports, she is the youngest of 14 children. Having so many older brothers and sisters inspired Celine to seek attention through performance – often singing and dancing to an audience made of her family.
Even though she grew up in a poor neighborhood, Celine Dion describes her childhood as a happy one. She was named after the song Celine, and this clearly inspired her to follow her dream and make it as a singing superstar. She debuted her voice at a cousin’s wedding at the age of five and never stopped from there.
Over the next few years, Celine’s childhood was taken up by taking part in various singing competitions across the country. She even worked hard to represent Switzerland in the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest, taking home the trophy to a proud country. Things were only going to go from big to bigger for the star, as she prepared for global fame she knew she was destined to get.
Celine Dion faced her first personal hurdle when realizing she didn’t have the looks to help her market herself as the global star she aspired to be. She went through the traumatic experience of removing herself from the public life for an entire year as she underwent extreme dental care to fix her teeth and crooked smile. Thankfully, her pain was worth it since we see her smile across billboards all over the world.
Just as she was recovering from her surgery, tragedy struck again for Celine Dion as she injured her voice during a 1989 tour. She was faced with an ultimatum: undergo immediate surgery or not speak for three weeks. Celine decided to go silent for almost a month to heal and not risk more damage through another invasive surgery.
In the early 1990s, Celine Dion was becoming more known in English-speaking countries. Having conquered Europe, and undergone an extreme makeover including learning English from scratch, her real big break came when she duetted with Peabo Bryson on the title track for Beauty and the Beast – one of Disney’s most successful animated films. Her iconic voice was heard by millions of people in the USA and she became a hero for young girls who now wanted to be like her.
She is perhaps best known for the power ballad My Heart Will Go On from Titanic, one of the most successful films ever made. No one could have predicted the success that came with her performance, helping her amass a $630m fortune over the years.
Celine Dion’s career got bigger and better as she won Oscars and Grammys for her work on films, as the 1990s continued, she publicly confessed personal feelings for her manager, René Angélil. He had been her manager since discovering her talent when she was only 12. They had worked together all this time but began an affair when she was 18 and he was 46. That’s quite the age gap!
Despite the 28-year age gap between the two, love was stronger than ever. They married in 1994 and renewed their vows in 2000. The couple initially had problems conceiving children, resulting in Celine having yet another surgery to help improve her chances. The couple had IVF and ended up having three healthy and beautiful children. Just another example of how her love and passion for life was tested and she overcame another challenge.
In 2016, tragedy struck the Dion household. For many years, René Angélil had suffered from weak health, experiencing heart attacks and early stages of cancer. Even though he had overcome these challenges in the past, René passed away in January at the age of 73. Two days later, Celine’s brother died of cancer.
Her most recent single, Ashes, appeared as the opening song in the superhero action film Deadpool 2. It has been amazing to see her so graciously and powerfully overcome the challenges she faced with her many surgeries, fertility challenges, and the tragic loss of her husband and best friend.
Today, Celine Dion remains one of the most influential and respected artists in the world. She tours the world performing songs in French, English, Spanish, Italian, German, Latin, Japanese, and Mandarin Chinese. Wow!