Concert is 8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 8
PITTSBURGH – Olivia Newton-John, star of the hit movie Grease, multiple Grammy Award-winner, and one of the world’s most popular entertainer for decades, will perform many of her hit songs in a special concert with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at Heinz Hall.
The concert will begin at 8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 8. Tickets, ranging from $35 to $125, can be purchased by calling the Heinz Hall box office at 412.392.4900, or visiting www.pittsburghsymphony.org.
With a career spanning more than four decades Olivia Newton-John remains a vibrant and creative actress, author, singer, philanthropist and humanitarian who is adored by fans across the world. Born in Cambridge, England, in 1948, she moved to Melbourne, Australia with her family when she was five. By 15, she had formed an all-girl group called Sol Four. Later that year, she won a talent contest on the popular TV show, Sing Sing Sing, which earned her a trip to London. By 1963, she was appearing on local daytime TV shows and weekly pop music programs in Australia. She cut her first single for Decca Records in 1966, a version of Jackie DeShannon’s Till You Say You’ll Be Mine. In 1971, she recorded a cover of Bob Dylan’s If Not For You, co-produced by John Farrar, who she continues to collaborate with today.
Her U.S. album debut, Let Me Be There, produced her first top 10 single of the same name, with her being honored by the Academy Of Country Music as Most Promising Female Vocalist and a Grammy Award as Best Country Vocalist. With more than 100 million albums sold, Olivia’s successes include four Grammy Awards, numerous Country Music, American Music and People’s Choice Awards, ten No. 1 hits including Physical, which topped the charts for ten consecutive weeks, and over 15 top 10 singles. In September 2008, Billboard Magazine listed Physical at No. 6 on their Top 100 Songs Of All Time list and in 2010 listed it as “The Sexiest Song of All Time.”
In 1978, her co-starring role with John Travolta in Grease catapulted Olivia into super-stardom. This film’s best-selling soundtrack featured the duets You’re The One That I Want and Summer Nights with Travolta, as well as her mega-hit, Hopelessly Devoted To You. To date, Grease remains the most successful movie musical in history. Her other feature film credits include Toomorrow, Xanadu, Two Of A Kind, It’s My Party and Sordid Lives. In 2010, Newton-John also appeared as herself in two episodes of the hit TV series, Glee, adding another Top 100 hit to her credits with a new version of “Physical” sung with Jane Lynch. In October 2010, Olivia starred in the breast cancer docudrama 1 A Minute, and the Canadian film, Score: A Hockey Musical. Her latest film, A Few Best Men, was released in January 2012, garnering her some of the best reviews of her film career. The soundtrack to A Few Best Men, features dance remixes of classic hits such as “Sugar Sugar” and “Daydream Believer” recorded by Olivia and remixed by some of the hottest club remixers in the world. In addition the soundtrack reunites her with her longtime producer and songwriter, John Farrar, on the single, “Weightless.” She is currently working on a new dance remix CD featuring some of her classic hits, as well new songs, and is set for release this year.
She was bestowed an O.B.E. (Order Of The British Empire) by Queen Elizabeth in 1979, has held many humanitarian causes close to her heart, particularly since the birth of her daughter Chloe in 1986. Olivia served as Goodwill Ambassador to the United Nations Environment Program and in 1991, the Colette Chuda Environmental Fund/CHEC (Children’s Health Environmental Coalition) was founded after the tragic death of Chloe’s best friend from a rare childhood cancer, with Olivia serving as National Spokesperson for 10 years. Her devotion and shared commitment to CHEC’s mission and goals enabled the organization to receive worldwide attention and support. For more information, visit www.HealthyChild.org.
Olivia released her first book, LivWise: Easy Recipes For A Healthy, Happy Life (Murdoch Books) in Australia in 2011. In LivWise, Olivia explains her belief in the importance of eating a healthy diet in order to maintain wellness and balance. It will be released in the USA and United Kingdom in 2012.
In 2010, Olivia was also honored with the prestigious Medal of the Order of Australia from Governor General Quentin Bryce. In addition to starring in films and on TV, and writing books and music, she continues to spend time in the recording studio. Her healing CD, Grace and Gratitude: Renewed (2010), which she co-wrote and produced with Amy Sky, debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard Magazine “New Age” chart. In addition, Billboard celebrated Olivia’s new music by saying, “Newton-John is soulfully committed to every word she sings, and fans will be taken by the plush arrangements, melodic warmth, and of course, the artist’s regal vocals.”
Her charmed life has not been without its share of upset. In the 1990s, Olivia successfully overcame her own battle with breast cancer, which inspired her self-penned and produced album, GAIA, her most personal album reflecting upon her experiences with cancer. She used these experiences to gain greater self-awareness and became a positive inspiration to millions of people battling cancer. As a breast cancer survivor, Olivia has become increasingly well known and respected for talking openly about her battle with breast cancer and for promoting public awareness of the importance of early detection. Her personal triumph over cancer led her to announce her partnership with Austin Health and the creation of the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre (ONJCWC) on the Austin Campus in her hometown, Melbourne, Australia.