The pint size Australian television, film and music star has captivated the world with her staggering capacity for reinvention and captivating iconic pop songs, many of which we just can’t get out of our heads. First introduced as Charlene, a loveable young mechanic on Australian television soap ‘Neighbours’, she moved on to an outstanding and iconic music career, throughout which she also gained enormous public support and respect during her highly publicised battle with breast cancer.
Kylie Minogue was the first child of Ron Minogue, an accountant, and Carol Jones, a former dancer from Maesteg, Wales. Her sister, Dannii, is also a pop singer and her brother, Brendan, works as a news cameraman in Australia. The Minogue sisters began their careers as children on Australian television. Aged twelve, Kylie appeared in small roles in soap operas such as 'Skyways' and 'The Sullivans', before being cast in one of the lead roles in 'The Henderson Kids'.
However, her big-break came in 1986 when she was cast as a tomboy car mechanic, Charlene, on the hugely popular Australian soap opera, 'Neighbours'. During a benefit concert with other members of the Neighbours cast, Kylie performed 'The Loco-motion'. This led to an offer of a recording contract with Mushroom Records in 1987. Released as a single, the retitled 'Locomotion' spent seven weeks at number one in the Australian music charts and was the highest selling single in Australia during the 1980s.
British music producers Stock, Aitken and Waterman were so impressed by the Australian beauty that they decided to make her a star. Her string of successful hit singles took off with the release of 'I Should Be So Lucky' from her debut album 'Kylie' (1988).
Kylie's success grew after duets with her 'Neighbours' co-star and boyfriend, Jason Donovan, and her 1989 album, 'Enjoy Yourself', also topped the charts. After her film role in 'The Delinquents' at the turn of the '90s, Kylie morphed from wholesome pop princess into sexy superstar. This new image was underscored by her romance with INXS lead singer, the late Michael Hutchence.
Kylie was now gaining more media coverage than ever, and was signed to a new record deal with Deconstruction Records. Unfortunately her 1992 album, 'Let's Get To It', was her only album not to reach the UK top 10.
In the mid 1990s, Kylie's style became more 'indie'. In 1994, she released an album entitled 'Kylie Minogue' and appeared in Jean Claude Van Damme's 'Street Fighter'. In 1996, she worked with the Manic Street Preachers and released an album the following year entitled 'Impossible Princess' (retitled 'Kylie Minogue' after Princess Diana's death).
Dropped by Deconstruction, she joined Parlophone in 2000 and returned to her pop roots. Since this latest transformation she has been immensely successful with albums 'Light Years' and 'Fever' and three number one singles. She also featured in Baz Luhrmann's hit film 'Moulin Rouge'.
Kylie was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2005, and was forced to cancel the Australian leg of her hugely popular 'Showgirl' tour to undergo immediate treatment. She underwent surgery shortly after, with the media and fans being urged to respect her privacy. She started chemotherapy as part of her treatment regimen.
In December 2005, following successful treatment for her illness, Minogue released a digital-only single, 'Over the Rainbow', a live recording from her Showgirl tour. During the early months of 2006, media began reporting Minogue's upcoming projects and the general improvement in her health. By June the following year she was reported to be recording material for a new album and making preparations to continue her newly renamed 'Showgirl Homecoming' tour.
Her children's book, 'The Showgirl Princess', written during her period of convalescence, was published in October 2006, and her perfume, 'Darling', was launched in November. On her return to Australia for her concert tour, she likened her cancer battle and chemotherapy to experiencing a nuclear bomb and said that she was determined to resume her career.
True to her promise, on 11 November 2006, Minogue resumed her 'Showgirl - Homecoming Tour' with a performance in Sydney, joking with the crowd that she was, after an 18-month delay, "fashionably late". She had told journalists prior to the concert that she would be highly emotional and she cried before dedicating the song 'Especially for You' to her father, a survivor of prostate cancer.
In September 2007, Kylie released ‘X’, her first studio album in four years. The album, her 10th in all, featured 13 new tracks and was recorded in London, Stockholm and Ibiza. In addition to the album release, Kylie starred in a brand new documentary, 'White Diamond'. Directed by her friend and stylist William Baker, White Diamond goes behind the scenes of her 2006 Showgirl tour. Minogue said the film was "a good way to thank the fans for their support and see where all their good wishes went".
In November that year, the former Neighbours star announced plans for a string of European concerts in 2008. Branded ‘KylieX2008’, the tour arrived in the UK in June, culminating in two nights at the O2 arena in London. The tour was an overall success and highly emotional event.
In 2007, Minogue delighted herself and science fiction fans across the world by starring in the 'Doctor Who' Christmas Special, 'Voyage of the Damned'. In the episode she played an alien hostess, Astrid, on board a doomed starship refitted as the Titanic, which the Doctor must save from crashing to the Earth. The production team did not genuinely believe they could secure Minogue for the role, but she herself pushed to appear in the iconic BBC flagship show. A fan of the programme, Minogue had previously been named in an episode and used inspiration from the series' villainous Cybermen and Raston Warriors in her shows.
In July 2008, Minogue received an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to music and said that she was "almost as surprised as [she was] honoured". She described being "deeply touched" by the fact that her music had been acknowledged in such as way.
2009 was another busy year for Minogue. Alongside the much loved British comedians James Corden and Mathew Horne, the show-stopping pop princess hosted the 2009 Brit Awards, adding glamour and incredible energy to the night. She also appeared in 'Blue', Bollywood's biggest budget film made to date. The 2009 release of remix album 'Boombox', featuring remixes of Kylie's greatest hits, was positivity received by fans all over the globe, who remain loyal to the celebrity darling who has touched so many with her strength and determination.
'Aphrodite’, Minogue's eleventh studio album, was released on 30 June 2010 and debuted at number one in the UK charts. The songs 'All the Lovers' and 'Get Outta My Way' from the album did well in the United States and both reached number one on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs chart. Her latest album, 'Kiss Me Once' was released in 2014.
In an interview with Grazia, Minogue hinted about her future plans for motherhood. When asked whether she would consider surrogacy or adoption, she said that she "would absolutely look into those options because children and family are very important to [her]".