My Chat with Tina began somewhat differently to how I thought it would. “Hello my darling, how are you? Sweetheart I just have one little thing to finish up, I’ll be two minutes honey…” Wait, hold on. Did this international superstar just call me sweetheart? I couldn’t believe it.
This, my friends, is the ever present splendour and grandeur that is Tina Arena.
This humble, elegant lady simply draws you in. Her gentle, kind voice makes you feel at home, as if you’ve known her for decades. If you didn’t know that Arena was a world renowned superstar, you’d think she was just a sweet, unassuming lady that you’d briefly met. The ability to make people feel so content and at ease when you’ve never met, is not only very rare, but a gift. Tina Arena is one of those people, and we were lucky enough to have a chat with her.
“Who inspires me? Oh, wow. That’s a tough question. I suppose I’d have to say my education, and everything I’ve learned through my family. I’m inspired by life, my friends, what I believe in. I have a willingness to learn, which I suppose is my motivation and my inspiration.”
For Tina, life has been busy from the word go. She began her performance career as an eight year old, immediately captivating the audiences of Young Talent Time. At 18, she released her first single, ‘Turn up the Beat’, where her name continued to grow in the music scene. Arena mesmerized audiences at the 2000 Opening Ceremony of the Sydney Olympics, singing alongside John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John, Vanessa Amorosi, Human Nature and Julie Anthony. In January 2010, Tina’s career had skyrocketed, with a live CD and DVD being released in Australia called The Onstage Collection, where the album reached #2 on the ARIA Top 50 albums chart. The live record proved to be Arena’s 8th Top 10 album on the ARIA Australian-only Artist Chart.
Last year Tina released the incredibly successful album RESET, which was one of the highest selling albums of 2013. Work on the album began in late 2012, where Tina was already working on her soon to be released autobiography, Now I Can Dance. While Tina goes between living in France and England, she has also travelled to Sweden to work with the distinguished song writing team of Mattias Lindblom and Anders Wollbeck. Following the release of the album, Tina is touring Australia in August and over September as well – the RESET tour. Asking whether she is excited for the tour, Tina immediately fires back an answer, a bubbly, passionate tone in her voice. “I’m very excited! I’m really looking forward to performing in front of my Australian fans.”
The RESET tour kicks off on August the 15th of this year at the Crown Theatre in Perth. This album, she says, “is a collection of sophisticated pop songs with real narratives,” with the intention of making a stand against the all too common dumbing down of pop songs in today’s society. Arena brings class and sophistication to today’s popular music – a true lady of the music industry. RESET is an album where nothing is off limits – it shares the intimacy of Tina’s personal life with everything that has happened in the past twelve years since her last original album was released, Just Me. Alongside this, Tina produced the whole tour herself.
“I just thought it was time to take the leap, and do it my way, without somebody telling me I have to do things differently. I’m working with an incredible team, but yes, I just thought that I’d like to do it my way for this tour. I’m very excited! I’m really looking forward to performing in front of my Australian fans.”
Before returning to the Australian music scene for RESET, Tina had spent a lot of time in her adopted country of France, selling over four million records and being the first Australian artist to ever receive Europe’s most prestigious cultural honour – a Knighthood of the Order of National Merit.
In her personal life, Tina gave birth to her son, Gabriel, in 2005. Alongside this, she has become the Australian Ambassador for Barnardos, one of the leading child protection charities in the country. So far, Tina has loved being a part of the Barnardos community.
“Oh, it’s wonderful. I have such a huge passion for Barnardos and everything they stand for. They’re an absolutely extraordinary association who don’t get the profile that they deserve. I mean, giving children access to a safe place when they’re in terrible situations is something we’d all have to agree is a good cause. So yes, I love Barnardos and I’ve very passionate about their work.”
In terms of her future plans, Tina is leaving it open to play out for itself. “I have no idea! Absolutely no idea. Being a performer is not a nine to five job, so it’s hard to know what my future plans are, because in this industry you never know what you’re doing in the next five minutes, let alone the next five months, or five years. Although, if I had to pick something, I would love to have a break somewhere in there!”
The beautiful Tina Arena is second to none, with her incredible career spanning over nearly forty years. Her incredible gift, both as a performer and charity ambassador, makes her something truly special and independent – this strong, remarkable woman has developed a household name for herself and an extremely successful career across the world.
A truly superb lady with, we’re sure, many more triumphs to come.
For ticket purchases to the RESET tour, head to http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/show.aspx?sh=TINAAREN14 for more information.