American singer-songwriter, Lady Gaga (Stefani Germanotta) was born 28 March 1986 at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, New York City to a Catholic family. Her parents both have Italian ancestry; she also has more distant French-Canadian roots. She was Brought up in the Upper West Side of Manhattan, From age 11, she attended the Convent of the Sacred Heart, a private all-girls Roman Catholic school.
Gaga began playing the piano at age four when her mother insisted she become “a cultured young woman”. She took piano lessons and practiced through her childhood. The lessons taught her to create music by ear, which she preferred over reading sheet music. Her parents encouraged her to pursue music, and enrolled her in Creative Arts Camp. As a teenager, she played at open mic nights. Gaga played the lead roles of Adelaide in Guys and Dolls and Philia in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum She also studied method acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute for ten year Gaga unsuccessfully auditioned for New York shows, though she did appear in a small role as a high school student in a 2001 episode of The Sopranos titled “The Telltale Moozadell”.
In 2003, at age 17, Gaga gained early admission to Collaborative Arts Project 21, a music school at New York University (NYU)’s Tisch School of the Arts, and lived in an NYU dorm. She studied music there, and improved her songwriting skills by writing essays on art, religion, social issues and politics, including a thesis on pop artists Spencer Tunick and Damien Hirst. She left school, in 2005, to focus on her music career and also played an unsuspecting diner customer for MTV’s Boiling Points, a prank reality television show.
In 2005, Gaga recorded two songs with hip-hop singer Grandmaster Melle Mel for an audio book accompanying Cricket Casey’s children’s novel The Portal in the Park. She also formed a band called the SGBand with some friends from NYU. After seeing Gaga at the 2006 Songwriters Hall of Fame New Songwriters Showcase at The Cutting Room in June, talent scout Wendy Starland recommended her to music producer Rob Fusari who collaborated with Gaga, helping to develop her songs and compose new material. Fusari was also the first person to call her “Lady Gaga”, which was derived from Queen’s song “Radio Ga Ga”. Fusari and Gaga established a company called Team Lovechild, LLC to promote her career.
Gaga was signed to Def Jam in September 2006 however She was dropped from the label three months later and began performing at neo-burlesque shows. she then met performance artist Lady Starlight, who helped mold her onstage persona and they began performing a tribute to 1970s variety acts as “Lady Gaga and the Starlight Revue” at downtown club venues like the Mercury Lounge, The Bitter End, and the Rockwood Music Hall and were and billed as “The Ultimate Pop Burlesque Rockshow”, They also performed at the 2007 Lollapalooza music festival. Gaga started with avant-garde electronic dance music, but began to incorporate pop melodies and the glam rock style of David Bowie and Queen into her songs. In November 2007, Vincent Herbert signed Gaga to his label Streamline Records. Gaga made a deal with Sony/ATV and was hired to write songs for Britney Spears, New Kids on the Block, Fergie, and The Pussycat Dolls. Fortuitously the Musician Akon convinced Jimmy Iovine, chairman and CEO of Interscope Geffen A&M, to have Gaga also sign with his own label KonLive. Gaga met with songwriter and producer RedOne and collaborated with him in the recording studio for a week on her debut album. However some radio stations found her music too “racy”, “dance-oriented”, and “underground” for the mainstream market.
Gaga’s debut album The Fame, was released in 2008 containing the singles, “Just Dance” and “Poker Face” and it reached number one in Austria, Canada, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland and the UK reaching the top five in Australia and the US. Three other singles, “Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)”, “LoveGame” and “Paparazzi”, were also released from the album. Remixed versions of the singles from The Fame, except “Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)”, were included on Hitmixes in 2009. At the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards, The Fame and “Poker Face” won Best Dance/Electronica Album and Best Dance Recording, respectively. In 2010 Gaga’s The Monster Ball Tour grossed $227 million, becoming the highest-grossing concert tour for a debut headlining artist. She also toured with The Pussycat Dolls’ on the 2009 Doll Domination Tour in Europe and the Pacific, before headlining The Fame Ball Tour.
The Fame was reissued as The Fame Monster for which she wrote eight new songs including, “Bad Romance”, and “Telephone”, with Beyoncé, which became Gaga’s fourth UK number one. The third single “Alejandro”, attracted controversy when the music video was deemed blasphemous by the Catholic League The video for “Bad Romance” became the most watched on YouTube in 2010. Gaga also won eight awards from 13 nominations, including Video of the Year for “Bad Romance” At the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards. The Fame Monster won the Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Album, and “Bad Romance” won Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and Best Short Form Music Video at the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards. During 2009, Gaga spent a record 150 weeks on the UK Singles Chart and became the most downloaded female act in a year in the US, with 11.1 million downloads sold, earning an entry in the Guinness Book of World Records.
The Fame and The Fame Monster together have since sold more than 15 million copies worldwide. Gaga then embarked on her second worldwide concert tour, The Monster Ball Tour, and released The Remix, which became among the best-selling remix albums of all time And The Monster Ball Tour became the highest-grossing concert tour for a debut headlining artist. Lady Gaga also performed Concerts at Madison Square Garden in New York City which were filmed for an HBO television special, Lady Gaga Presents the Monster Ball Tour: At Madison Square Garden and performed songs from her albums at the 2009 Royal Variety Performance, the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards, and the 2010 BRIT Awards.
Gaga also began collaborating with consumer electronics company Monster Cable Products to create in-ear, jewel-encrusted headphones called Heartbeats by Lady Gaga. She also partnered with Polaroid in January 2010 as their creative director and announced a suite of photo-capture products called Grey Label. Sadly Gaga was tested borderline positive for lupus. In 2011, Gaga released “Born This Way”, Which sold one million copies within five days, earning the Guinness World Record for the fastest selling single on iTunes and became the 1,000th number-one single in the history of the charts. It was followed by the singles “Judas”, “The Edge of Glory”, “You and I” and “Marry the Night”. The album Born this Way sold eight million copies worldwide and received three Grammy nominations, including Gaga’s third consecutive nomination for Album of the Year. She also embarked on the Born This Way Ball tour in April 2012, however this ended prematurely when Gaga canceled the remaining dates due to a labral tear of her right hip that required surgery.
In 2011, Gaga collaborated with Tony Bennett on a jazz version of “The Lady Is a Tramp”, Elton John on “Hello Hello” for Gnomeo & Juliet and The Lonely Island and Justin Timberlake on “3-Way (The Golden Rule). She also performed a concert at the Sydney Town Hall in Australia that year to promote Born This Way and to celebrate former US President Bill Clinton’s 65th birthday, she was also featured in a Thanksgiving television special titled A Very Gaga Thanksgiving, which spawned the release of her fourth EP, A Very Gaga Holiday. In 2012 Gaga guest-starred as an animated version of herself in an episode of The Simpsons called “Lisa Goes Gaga”. She also appeared in the documentary films The Zen of Bennett and Katy Perry: Part of Me,and released her first fragrance, Lady Gaga Fame, followed by a second one, Eau de Gaga, in 2014.
In 2013, Gaga released the song “Applause” from her third album Artpop followed by the track “Aura” to accompany Robert Rodriguez’s Machete Kills, where she plays an assassin named La Chameleon. The second Artpop single, “Do What U Want”, featured singer R. Kelly, Gaga also hosted an episode of Saturday Night Live in November 2013, performing “Do What U Want” (with Kelly) and an album cut, “Gypsy”. However Gaga removed Do What U Want from all streaming platforms in 2019 in the light of allegations made against Kelly sexually abusing several women. Artpop was released in 2013. The song”G.U.Y.” was released in 2014. Following her second Thanksgiving Day television special on ABC, Lady Gaga and the Muppets Holiday Spectacular, she performed a special rendition of “Do What U Want” with Christina Aguilera on the fifth season of the American reality talent show The Voice.
In 2014, Gaga performed seven concerts at New York’s Roseland Ballroom before its closure. She also embarked on the ArtRave: The Artpop Ball tour, building on concepts from her ArtRave promotional event. Gaga also split from longtime manager Troy Carter over “creative differences”. She briefly appeared in Rodriguez’s Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, and was confirmed as Versace’s spring-summer 2014 face with a campaign called “Lady Gaga For Versace”. Gaga also released a collaborative jazz album with Tony Bennett titled Cheek to Cheek containing the songs “Anything Goes” and “I Can’t Give You Anything but Love” which became Gaga’s third consecutive number-one album on the Billboard 200, and won a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album a concert special Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga: Cheek to Cheek Live!, was also recorded before Gaga embarked on the Cheek to Cheek Tour. Gaga also performed at the 87th Academy Awards, singing a medley of songs from The Sound of Music in a tribute to Julie Andrews. Gaga and Diane Warren co-wrote the song “Til It Happens to You” for the documentary The Hunting Ground, which earned them the Satellite Award for Best Original Song and an Academy Award nomination. Gaga won Billboard Woman of the Year and Contemporary Icon Award at the 2015 Annual Songwriters Hall of Fame Awards.
Gaga starred in the fifth season of the television anthology horror series American Horror Story: Hotel portraying a hotel owner named Elizabeth and also played a witch named Scathach in American Horror Story: Roanoke receiving the Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film award At the 73rd Golden Globe Awards, for her work on the season.
She appeared in Nick Knight’s 2015 fashion film for Tom Ford’s 2016 spring campaign and was guest editor for V fashion magazine’s 99th issue, which featured 16 different covers. She received Editor of the Year award at the Fashion Los Angeles Awards. In 2016, Gaga sang the US national anthem in February at Super Bowl 50, partnered with Intel and Nile Rodgers for a tribute performance to the late David Bowie at the 58th Annual Grammy Awards and sang “Til It Happens to You” at the 88th Academy Awards, where she was introduced by Joe Biden and was accompanied on-stage by 50 people who had suffered from sexual assault. She also received the Artist Award at the Jane Ortner Education Awards by The Grammy Museum, which recognizes artists who have demonstrated passion and dedication to education through the arts.
In 2016, she released the single, “Perfect Illusion” from her fifth album Joanne, which was named after Gaga’s late aunt, who inspires her music. Joanne became Gaga’s fourth number one album on the Billboard 200, making her the first woman to reach US Number 1 four times in the 2010s. The album’s second single was, “Million Reasons”. a piano version of the album’s title track was also released in 2018, winning a Grammy for Best Pop Solo Performance. Gaga performed during the Super Bowl LI halftime show on February 5, 2017 with a group of hundreds of lit drones forming various shapes in the sky above Houston’s NRG Stadium and earned her an Emmy nomination in the Outstanding Special Class Program category. Gaga headlined the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and also released the single, “The Cure”. Gaga’s creation of Joanne and preparation for her halftime show performance were featured in the documentary Gaga: Five Foot Two, which premiered on Netflix. In 2018, Gaga supported the March for Our Lives gun-control rally in Washington, D.C.and released a cover of Elton John’s “Your Song” for his tribute album Revamp. Unfortunately Gaga began suffering with fibromyalgia during the Joanne World Tour which causes chronic pain.
Gaga also appears as a struggling singer named Ally in Bradley Cooper’s critically acclaimed musical romantic drama A Star Is Born, a remake of the 1937 film of the same name. The film follows Ally’s relationship with singer Jackson Maine (played by Cooper). It premiered at the 75th Venice International Film Festival in August 2018, and was released worldwide in October. Gaga subsequently received nominations for an Academy Award, a BAFTA Award, a Golden Globe Award and a Screen Actors Guild for Best Actress, Gaga received the Critics’ Choice and National Board of Review awards for the role. Gaga and Cooper co-wrote and produced most of the songs such as “Shallow” on the soundtrack for A Star Is Born,
Which contains 34 tracks, including 19 original songs. Shallow earned Gaga an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Original Song as well as the Grammys for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance and Best Song Written for Visual Media. Gaga also received a BAFTA Award for Best Film Music. Gaga signed a two-year residency, named Lady Gaga Enigma, to perform at the MGM Park Theater in Las Vegas. Performing two different shows Enigma, which focuses on theatricality and includes the singer’s biggest hits, and Jazz and Piano, which involves tracks from the Great American Songbook and stripped-down versions of Gaga’s songs. She has also started working on her sixth studio album.