Tina Arena AM

As part of our commitment to capturing and sharing great Australian music stories, the Australian Music Vault asked some of the country’s most influential trailblazers and unsung heroes to open up about their lives in music.

Tina Arena AM is one of Australia’s highest selling recording artists having sold over 10 million albums worldwide. Born to Sicilian parents who had migrated to Australia in the 1950s, Arena grew up in a big family in a home filled with music. She learned to sing before she was able to string sentences together, performing for family and friends from the age of 18 months. As a cast member of the popular television show, Young Talent Time, ‘Tiny Tina’ became a household name in Australia during the 1970s.

In 1994, Arena’s multi-award winning album, Don’t Ask opened a new chapter in her career including a chance to relocate to Paris where a string of albums sung in English, French and Spanish earned her a devoted international following. Arena’s work over the past four decades as a singer, songwriter, producer and actress has been recognised with France's highest civil honour, the Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite (the first Australian artist to receive the award), induction into the ARIA Hall of Fame, and appointment to the Order of Australia (AM).

In this interview with Jane Gazzo, Tina Arena discusses her career on Young Talent Time, her surprise at being the first female artist to win both song and album of the year at the 1995 ARIA Awards, and her pride in singing the Australian national anthem on the Champs Élysées following Cadel Evans’ Tour de France win in 2011.

Tina Arena | Long Play Series

Interviewer: Jane Gazzo

Location: Melbourne Room, Arts Centre Melbourne, 2017


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