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Madonna          

Pop Legend, Music Sensation and Fashion Icon; Famous Hits Include "Papa Don't Preach," "Like a Prayer," and "Vogue"

A renaissance woman in the truest sense of the term -- singer, composer, producer, actor, executive, humanitarian, and, most recently, mother -- there is nothing, it seems, that Madonna cannot do. It is her passionate commitment to excellence, her complete involvement in every essential aspect of her art, her career, and her life, that has made Madonna one of a handful of the most innovative, influential, and inspiring artists of our time, and it is these same qualities that Madonna has brought to bear in the film and the music of Evita.

Madonna's history towers over the chronicles of popular culture, comprising a list of First, Best, Fastest, and Longest that stands as a monument to one woman's exceptional ability and extraordinary ambition. From 1982, when a cocky, confident, and coolly self-assured 24-year-old Detroit native first stepped onto the stage to lip-synch her debut single "Everybody" at New York's Danceteria, it was clear that something wholly original had happened.

Madonna has broken every available radio, video, sales, and box-office record, racking up no fewer than 29 Top Ten singles, 11 of those reaching No. 1. Her most recent chart topper, 1994's "Take A Bow," lodged in the top spot for seven consecutive weeks and beat the performance of her 1984 breakthrough, "Like A Virgin," which had a six-week run at the top. All told, Madonna's No. 1 and No. 2 singles have spent a total of 40 weeks at the top of the charts -- almost a solid year of uninterrupted hits. In one period in the late eighties, she racked up six straight Top 5 singles, beating the Beatles' old record for back-to-back chart toppers. The smash single "You Must Love Me," written especially for the film Evita by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, is one of the fastest rising singles in the history of Warner Bros. Records.

Of eleven Madonna albums, every one has reached the Top 15, all but one has made it into the Top 10, and seven have attained Top 5 status. Every one of that eleven-album catalogue (Evita will make it an even dozen) has sold over a million copies, two have sold over three million, and five have sold over four million. Madonna's international album sales are estimated at topping 100 million units.

Pivotal as recorded music is to Madonna's unparalleled success, she has had more videos, played more often, than any other artist in the history of the MTV network. Multi-awarded for these videos, Madonna has made a ground-breaking contribution to the video art form, as she has in her unstoppable sell-out music tours that combine music, theatrics, spectacle, and dazzling charisma and have packed stadiums globally for nearly two decades.

Madonna's film roles began with instant success as wacky Susan in "Desperately Seeking Susan," leading to starring in Dick Tracy and joining Woody Allen's exclusive repertory for "Shadows and Fog." Madonna's intriguing documentary performance in "Truth or Dare" was an in-your-face personal journey that intrigued audiences and critics alike and led to her unforgettable debut at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival.

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