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Vanessa Amorosi

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With just one album, Vanessa Amorosi has become Australia's third most successful female after Kylie Minogue and Tina Arena. Amorosi was born in Melbourne to parents who were both professional singer/dancers working in the Australasian theatre restaurant cabaret circuit. She was surrounded by music and singing and it had a profound impact on her life. At the age of four, Amarosi and her younger sisters were taking tap, jazz, and classical ballet classes at a dance school run by their uncle. The big turning point came when, at 14 years of age, Vanessa Amorosi took a part-time job singing in a Russian restaurant. Her other performances had been part of regular dance class type activities in which all the all kids engaged in those activities partake in. The Russian restaurant job was different. Amarosi was in the spotlight on her own and it was there the powerfully voiced teenager was spotted by TV producer Jack Strom. Strom had recently formed a management company with '70s recording star Mark Holden. Vanessa Amorosi took some convincing to throw her lot in with Strom and Holden. She'd already had numerous people promise to make her a star and seen nothing happen. But eventually they did convince her, signed her to a management contract, and set about working towards her first record. After rejections from all the major record companies, a deal was found with BMG distributed independent Transistor Records. Amorosi was their first Australian signing. In May, 1999, she flew to London to record several tracks, including her debut single with producer Steve Mac, known for his work with pop acts Boyzone and Five and, subsequently, Westlife. The first single "Have a Look" took Amorosi into Australia's national Top 20. The second single, the dance-pop "Absolutely Everybody" reached number three and spent 27 weeks in the Top 40, one of the longest runs of all time for an Australian single. The album The Power was the first time an Australian female reached number one on the national album chart with her first album. In all, her album generated four major hits and interest in her recordings throughout Europe, In September, 2000, Vanessa Amorosi was the only artist to feature in both the opening and the closing ceremonies of the Sydney Olympics. ~ Ed Nimmervoll

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