Younger Than Her Stepson
Celine Dion’s first and only husband was René Angélil (until his death in 2016). However, Angélil had been married two times before his marriage to Dion. Angélil had 3 children from his previous marriages. One of those children is Patrick Angélil. Patrick was born January 28, 1968. Celine Dion was born March 30, 1968.
Celine’s Mother Resented Her Relationship With René
Due to many different reasons, Celine’s mother, Thérèse, did not approve of her relationship with René. Celine discussed the matter with Access Hollywood in an interview, “It was very difficult for her. When I told her I had some really strong feelings for René she tried everything to kill him and make me snap out of it… I was very frustrated and mad at first, but she tried to make me understand that this man tried marriage twice before – he has three children, he’s not responsible, ‘I want the perfect Prince Charming for you’.” Her mother had a hard time accepting the age difference between the two. After all, when Celine met Rene, she was only 12 and he was 38 years old.
She Struggled With Fertility
In early 2000, Dion announced she would be taking some time off from her singing career to focus more on her family. But, it was later revealed, she was actually dealing with fertility issues, as she was having trouble conceiving. She had 2 operations at a fertility clinic in New York, as well as began trying in-vitro fertilization. After multiple attempts and years of trying, Dion was able to become pregnant and gave birth to her first son, René-Charles Dion Angélil, on January 25th, 2001.
She Initially Hated ‘My Heart Will Go On’
“My Heart Will Go On” is arguably Celine Dion’s most popular song. However, when she had first heard the song she wanted nothing to do with it. But, her husband convinced her otherwise. She recorded the song once as a demo and that demo actually become the real track. James Cameron, the director of Titanic, also wanted nothing to do with the song initially. He believed his movie was big enough without a big singer. However, once he listened to the track, it was all over. “My Heart Will Go On” became an instant hit.
Michael Jackson Was Her Idol
Since early in his career, Celine Dion was a huge fan of Michael Jackson. During an interview with Fox News, she said “I have been, like most people, an amazing fan of Michael. And since I was a very little girl, he has been on my wall and he has been an idol for me. He has been an inspiration…Growing up in show business, I always wanted the same life as him. Being in show business and singing all my life, even the same record company as him.”
Hung At A Bar As A Child
Celine came from a very large, musical family. Therefore, all the siblings used to preform together. The family owned a small piano bar in Charlemagne, Quebec called Le Vieux Baril (which translates to The Old Barrel). The family lived above the bar and worked there during business hours (both parents and children). Celine began performing in her family’s bar when she was only 5-years-old. It was obvious to most customers how talented Celine was, and many requested her performances. The bar has since been demolished.
Sued For Millions
In early 2000, Dion announced she would be taking a break from her singing career to focus on her family. Of course, rumors of speculation began to spread. A publication called the National Enquirer published a fake story with the headline “I’m Pregnant With Twins!” Celine and her hubby, Rene, were in the featured image. Dion sued the publication for $20 million. National Enquirer printed a formal apology and donated the money to the American Cancer Society, in the couple’s honor.
A Doctor But Never Graduated From High School
As Celine began performing at a very young age, it should come as no surprise that she didn’t finish high school. She took her time that she was supposed to be studying and put all that effort into becoming a star. However, she is still considered a doctor as she was given an honorary doctorate from Laval University in Quebec. Dion said the recognition was “a very great honor for a little girl from Charlemagne.”
Found Manager’s Information By Chance
When Celine was 12-years-old she collaborated with her mother and her brother, Jacques, to compose her first original song, which was titled “Ce n’était qu’un rêve” (which translates to “It Was Only A Dream”). Her other brother, Michel, sent the recording to music manager René Angélil. He found Angélil’s information on the back of a Ginetto Reno album. However, it took more than mailing in a record for Angélil to notice her.
Needed Mommy’s Help
Along with the demo sent in of Celine’s new song to René Angélil, Celine’s mother, Thérèse also sent in a handwritten note that said “This is a 12-year-old with a fantastic voice. Please listen to her. We want her to be like Ginette Reno.” However, the original demo and letter were never answered. Therefore, one of her brothers jumped in and requested a meeting with Angélil. At the meeting, he was able to convince Angélil to listen to the demo. Angélil was immediately smitten by her voice.
Signed On The Spot
After Angélil heard Dion’s demo, he invited her to his office for a live audition. Upon arrival, he handed her a pencil and said, “Here’s your microphone. Now sing as though you were in front of a sellout audience.” She blew him away. He signed her that day. From that day on, Angélil became and remained Celine’s biggest fan.
René Mortgaged His House For Her
It was reported that René Angélil burst into tears upon her Celine sing in person for the first. He truly believed in her and her talent. So much so that he mortgaged his house in order to fund the 12-year-old’s first record. Although it was a gamble, he knew it was the right move. It became a decision he would never regret.
Loved By Many, Including The Pope
During her career, Celine became one of the most recognizable artists in the world. She performed in thousands of stadiums to millions of people all over the world. However, there was once performance that she remembers best. In 1984, Pope John II visited Quebec. A concert, in his honor, took place at the Olympic Stadium in Montreal. Dion preformed Une Colombe for the Pope and the crowd of 65,000 people. She felt this was one of the most soulful performances of her career.
Had Cosmetic Surgery At Age 18
By the time Celine was 18-years-old, she had already begun making a name for herself in the music industry. However, she and René knew she needed to change her image to truly become a superstar. Therefore, she receded from the spotlight and underwent some changes. She had dental surgery to improve her smile and went to a school to improve her English.
Became An English Sensation
Improving her English may have been one of the best decisions for her career. In 1990, she released her first album in English, titled “Unison”. The album was certified gold in the US, and her single Where Does My Heart Beat Now reached #5 on the billboard charts. She began getting attention of celebrities such as Jay Leno, who invited her onto his show. He predicted she would become a superstar and have a very a successful career.
Almost Needed Vocal Cord Surgery
After the success of her first English album, Unison, Celine began her first world tour. Unfortunately, while on tour tragedy struck. She lost her. After a quick visit to the doctor, she learned she was suffering from laryngitis. The doctor blamed mainly exhaustion for the extreme inflammation in her vocal cords. She was given strict orders. She must cancel her shows and remain silent for 3 weeks. If she did not follow his orders she would most likely need vocal cord surgery. She abided to the doctor’s rules.
Had An Over-The-Top Wedding
A few years after announcing their romantic relationship, René and Celine decided to make their love official and get married. The two tied the knot at the Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal on December 17, 1994. The wedding was televised, so the whole nation watched intently as the two said “I Do.” However, filming the wedding may have backfired as many criticized the couple’s choices for the wedding. Many believed it was way to over-the-top.
Her Wedding Dress Cost Over $25,000
Celine and René’s wedding was in every sense extravagant, which included Celine’s dress. OnTopOf reports “The Mirella and Steve Gentile-designed gown reportedly took 1,000 hours to make and featured a 20-foot train, while she wore a seven-pound tiara made of 2,000 Austrian crystals. Although it’s unclear just how much the dress ended up costing the chanteuse, the 90 yards of Italian silk and French lace, alone, cost upwards of $25,000.”
Children Named After People She Admired
In May 2010, Celine and René announced that Dion was pregnant with twins, after multiple tries with in-vitro fertilization. The fraternal twins were born on October 23, 2010. Celine had carefully thought about the boy’s name before their birth. One was named Eddy, after Dion’s favorite French songwriter, Eddy Marnay. Marnay had helped produce 5 of Dion’s albums. The other boy was named Nelson after the former South African President Nelson Mandela.
Husband Loses His Battle To Cancer
Sadly, in 2016, Rene Angélil lost his battle to throat cancer. After his death, Dion said “she misses him everyday”. In 2016, Dion was award the “Billboard Icon Award”. She burst into tears as she received the award and dedicated it to her late husband. As she was thanking people towards the end of her speech, she concluded with “and most importantly my beloved husband who I know will continue to watch over me from up above.”
Finds Strength As A Family
The past year and a half without her husband has been hard. However, she and her children are closer than ever. She returned back to performing as she knew that is what Rene would have wanted. “I understood that my career was in a way his masterpiece, his song, his symphony,” she wrote in a written message that appeared in the theater before her first show back. “The idea of leaving it unfinished would have hurt him terribly. I realized that if he ever left us, I would have to continue without him, for him.”