Tina Arena : biography
2000: Sydney Olympic Games
One of Arena’s career highlights had to be singing at the the 2000 Opening Ceremony of the Sydney Olympics. The event took place in Stadium Australia on 15 September 2000. Seven Network covered the national broadcast across Australia and made history when the much awaited spectacle went on to become the highest rating TV telecast in Australian history.cavemanproductions.com. Tina Arena’s Flame. Retrieved on 15 June 2013.
John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John, Vanessa Amorosi, Human Nature and Julie Anthony are some of the Australian artists who also graced the stage of the opening ceremony.mtv.com. . Retrieved on 15 June 2013.
Arena, dressed in a Fiona Scanlan gold-scale dress, performed the anthemic power-ballad called "The Flame" backed up by the Sydney Children’s Choir which was written by Australian musical director, musician and TV personality, John Foreman.AFR. Tina Arena’s Second Coming. Retrieved on 23 November 2012.
Arena was quoted as saying:
"When I sang at the Olympics, I cared about the fact that I was Australian. And I was touched because I was an ethnic girl, of ethnic blood but that WAS Australian. Because I was born here, this is where I grew up, this is where I learned everything."ABC Talking Heads. . Retrieved on 15 June 2013.
2001–2002: Just Me
Arena collaborated and co-wrote songs with Nile Rodgers (Madonna, Diana Ross), Desmond Child (Ricky Martin, Aerosmith), Robbie Nevil (Earth, Wind & Fire), Mark Hudson (Eric Clapton, Cher), Victoria Shaw and Peter-John Vettese (Dido, Paul McCartney) on the record Just Me. The album took a different genre for it contained more upbeat tracks as opposed to her last two previous records, Don’t Ask and In Deep which featured Arena’s soaring voice on slow and soothing ballads. Arena, fresh from legal battles and divorce from her ex husband and manager, Ralph Carr at the time also said that the record is not angry or bitter but rather a "celebration of womanhood".ukmix.org. Just Me, Tina Arena album review. Retrieved on 19 June 2013.
Despite her international success, Arena’s popularity in Australia had begun to wane with her fourth album Just Me failing to match the success of Don’t Ask and In Deep, but still managed to certify Gold in AustraliaARIA Charts. Accreditations. Retrieved on 23 November 2012. and France. Arena also did an exclusive album showcase for about 150 people, mostly Australian TV and media personalities in her hometown of Melbourne and performed songs from the album.MMM Tina Arena website. Details on Just Me. Retrieved on 19 June 2013. The record spawned a Top 10 ARIA single and #1 Australian radio airplay single, ‘Symphony Of Life’. Tina performed the track at the closing of the Gay Games, when the international sporting event was held in Sydney. Arena was also featured on 2, a duets album from Olivia Newton-John where they recorded an uptempo track called "I’ll Come Runnin’". This year, Arena shocked the Australian public as well when she did a semi-nude photo shoot for Black+White magazine.smh.com.au. Arena’s adult themes. Retrieved on 19 June 2013. Arena said:
"This shoot isn’t about shock value, and it’s not porn, it’s an elegant, understated and honest exercise in challenging my sexuality and learning to love myself again."MMM Tina Arena website. Arena on Black+White. Retrieved on 19 June 2013.
2003–2005: "Never (Past Tense)" and Greatest Hits (1994–2004)
A foray into dance music in 2003 was also successful when Arena was featured on The Roc Project’s "Never (Past Tense)"DanceMusic.About.Com. Ray Roc Interview. Retrieved on 23 November 2012. which reached #1 on the United States Billboard dance Top 10. The song was remixed by various DJ’s that mainly created a plethora of house and electronica inspired versions of "Never (Past Tense)".discogs.com. Retrieved on 27 June 2013. This marked the first time three performers associated with Young Talent Time were simultaneously in the chart’s Top 10 with Dannii Minogue’s "I Begin to Wonder" and Kylie Minogue’s "Slow" also appearing on the chart. The track was also featured heavily on the US TV series Queer as Folk and on the soundtrack album. Arena performed the Tiësto remix of "Never (Past Tense)" along with a new remix of "Dare You To Be Happy" live at the official Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras afterparty in March 2005.Setlist FM. Retrieved on 23 November 2012. Arena is also being regarded as one of the gay icons of this generation.Guide To Gay Dot Com. Retrieved on 3 December 2012.