New York University's Tisch School of the Arts
PLACE OF BIRTH
Yonkers, New York
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta
Lady Gaga was born as Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta on
March 28, 1986 in Yonkers, New York. She attended New York
University's Tisch School for the Arts but left to find
creative expression. She wrote songs for other artists until
being discovered by R&B singer Akon. Her debut album,
The Fame, was a huge success, and the single "Poker Face"
topped charts in almost every category, in almost every country.
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta was born on March 28, 1986
in Yonkers, New York, to Cynthia and Joseph Germanotta. Germanotta,
now known as Lady Gaga (she has attributed the inspiration for
her name to the Queen song "Radio Ga-Ga"), went on to become an
international pop star.
Gaga learned to play the piano by the age of 4. At the age of 11,
she was accepted to the Juilliard School in Manhattan, but instead
attended a private Catholic school in the city. She continued
studying music and performing, writing her first piano ballad at
the age of 13, and she held her first performance in a New York
nightclub at the age of 14.
A few years later, Gaga was granted early admission to New York
University's Tisch School of the Arts—she was one of only 20
students in the world to receive the honor of early acceptance.
While there, she studied music and worked on her songwriting skills.
She later withdrew from school to find creative inspiration.
To make ends meet, she took three jobs, including a stint as a
gogo dancer, while she honed her performance-art act.
In 2005, Lady Gaga was briefly signed by Def Jam Records, but
was dropped just months later. Being dropped by the label
propelled the singer to perform on her own in clubs and venues
on New York City's Lower East Side. There, she collaborated
with several rock bands, and began her experimentation with fashion.
In 2007, at the age of 20, Gaga began work at Interscope
Records as a songwriter for other artists on the label,
including Britney Spears, New Kids on the Block, and The
Pussycat Dolls. R&B singer Akon discovered Gaga while she
was performing a burlesque show that she created, called
"Lady Gaga and the Starlight Revue." Impressed, Akon signed the
performer to his label under the Interscope umbrella, Kon Live.
Through 2007 and 2008, Gaga wrote and recorded her debut album,
The Fame. The record was received positive reviews and popular
success in the United States. With the help of her own creative
team, "Haus of Gaga," the performer also began to make a name
for herself internationally.
Lady Gaga's debut single, "Just Dance," was released to radio
in early 2008, and received both popular and commercial acclaim.
The song was then nominated for a Grammy Award
(for best dance recording) in 2008. The song lost to Daft Punk's
"Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger," but this didn't keep Gaga
from reaching No. 1 on the mainstream pop charts in January 2009.
The second single off of The Fame, "Poker Face," earned Gaga
even more success. The song topped singles charts in almost every
category, and in almost every country. Both songs were produced
by Akon's affiliate RedOne, who co-wrote most of Lady Gaga's album.
Later in 2008, Lady Gaga opened for the newly reformed New Kids
on the Block. She also collaborated with the group on the song
"Big Girl Now" from New Kids on the Block's album The Block.
The following year, Gaga released an album of eight songs,
The Fame Monster, followed by 2011's Born This Way. In 2013,
Lady Gaga released her third studio album, Artpop. The album didn't
resonate as strongly with her audience as her previous works.
Among the shake-ups in her inner circle, she and her manager
parted ways. In 2014, she released an album of jazz duets with
crooner Tony Bennett entitled Cheek to Cheek. In an interview with
Parade, Lady Gaga said of her latest collaboration, “Working with
Tony has reaffirmed everything I knew but that you start to forget
when your life changes and it gets really noisy. For Tony,
it’s all about great music.”
Has 14 tattoos: a peace sign on her left wrist, "Little Monsters"
on her left inner bicep, a Rainer Rilke quote on her left inner
bicep, the death date of her aunt Joanne on her left inner bicep,
"Tokyo Love" on her left shoulder blade, a heart with "Dad" on her
left shoulder blade, daises on her left shoulder blade, a treble
clef on her center lower back, flowers up her left side, a unicorn
with "Born This Way" on her left thigh, the word "ARTPOP" on her
left forearm, an anchor on the left side of her ribcage, a cherub
on the back of her head and the word "Rio" on the back of her head.
Her father is of Italian descent. Her maternal grandfather had
French-Canadian, English, German, and Scottish ancestry, and her
maternal grandmother was of Italian descent.
Go-go danced in bars until her musical career took off.
Three hit albums have spawned multiple award-winning hits such as
'Poker Face' Bad Romance' and 'Born This Way'.
Went to the same school with Paris Hilton.
She has been influenced by Madonna, David Bowie, Judy Garland,
Grace Jones, Cyndi Lauper, Freddie Mercury, Björk, Liza Minnelli,
Yoko Ono, Britney Spears and Michael Jackson.
At seventeen, she was one of twenty people in the world to have gained
early admission to the New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.
Her stage name, Lady Gaga, is a reference to the song "Radio Ga-Ga"
Interscope music executive Vincent Herbert hired her in January 2008
as a music writer.
She states that she is "very into fashion" and that it is "everything".
Her song "Boys, Boys, Boys" was inspired by Mötley Crüe's hit "Girls,
She learned how to play the piano at the age of four, wrote her first
piano ballad at 13, and began performing at open mic nights by the age
Her parents are Joseph, an Internet entrepreneur, and Cynthia, a
She makes mention of the band, The Killers, in her song "Boys, Boys, Boys".
On February 20, 2009, she donated tickets and a meet and greet, for
any show on her Fame Ball tour, in the US or Canada, to raise money
for Odyssey Charter School and elementary schools in Los Angeles
affected by budget cuts.
Has a younger sister, Natalie Germanotta.
Is a natural brunette.
Attended Sacred Heart School, a private Catholic school in New York City.
Her classmates included Paris Hilton and Nicky Hilton. Other former students
include Joanna Philbin and J.J. Philbin.
Bleached her hair blonde in light of the fact that she was being mistaken
for Amy Winehouse by interviewers while trying to make it big.
Has a contralto vocal range.
Her song "Telephone" was originally written for Britney Spears's sixth
album Circus. However, after it failed to make the album's final track
listing, Gaga recorded the song as a collaboration with 'Beyonce Knowles'
for her second album, The Fame Monster.
(May 10, 2010) Made the cover of Time magazine's double issue -
The 100 Most Influential People in the World - alongside Bill Clinton
and Didier Drogba. In the magazine's "Artists" category (which she headed),
the singer's tribute was written by Cyndi Lauper.
Is good friends with Deepak Chopra and has stated he is one of the most
influential people in her life because of the spiritual guidance he gives her.
In high school, one of her nicknames was "The Germ".
A staunch supporter of LGBT Rights.
Her sister, Natalie Germanotta, once dressed as her for Halloween.
Her album "Born This Way" (2011) sold over 1 million copies in the first week.
Amazon sold 440,000 copies of the album in its first two days at a price of
99 cents (at a loss of over $3 million). This contributed to the album's
662,000 digital sales, the highest one-week digital total of all time.
Her second album "Born This Way" (2011) is the seventh album to sell 1 million
copies in 1 week. Gaga is the 5th woman to sell 1 million album copies
in a week, after Whitney Houston, Britney Spears, Norah Jones and Taylor Swift.
Ranked #99 in the 2011 FHM list of "100 Sexiest Women". Ranked #92 in the
2010 FHM list of "100 Sexiest Women".
Launched "Born This Way Foundation", a non-profit organization to
worldwide, develop a new standard of care towards one another
[November 13, 2011].
[November 14, 2011] Fired her longtime creative director and choreographer,
In a 2011 Billboard poll, Gaga was voted as having the Best Fashion for
2011 and was also voted as the Most Overrated artist of 2011. Her song
"Born This Way" was voted as the 3rd Favorite Hot 100 No. 1 (16% of all votes),
behind "Rolling in the Deep" by Adele (32% of all votes) and
"Hold it Against Me"
by Britney Spears (31% of all votes). Gaga's album "Born This Way" was also
voted as the 3rd Favorite No. 1 album for 2011 (17% of votes), behind "21"
by 'Adele' (35% of votes) and "Femme Fatale" by Britney Spears (33% of votes).
Sang "The Lady is a Tramp" with Tony Bennett on his compilation album
"Duets II" (2011).
Her father, Joe Germanotta, and Art Smith are co-owners of "Joanne Trattoria",
a New York Italian restaurant [January 2012].
Voted #18 on Ask men's top 99 'most desirable' women of 2012 list.
Got her middle name, Joanne, after her aunt. Her aunt Joanne died of
lupus at age 19.
Famously attended the MTV Video Music Awards 2009 (2009) with Kermit the Frog.
Underwent successful hip surgery on February 20, 2013.
Named the new face of "Polaroid". [January 2010]
Set to make first theatrical debut in Machete Kills. [January 2013]
Ended her 2-year world tour early due to injury; is now recovering and
focusing on her second studio album, ARTPOP [February 2012]
Has an extremely wide array of influences that include David Bowie,
Madonna, Whitney Houston, Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson, Queen,
The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, Amy Winehouse, Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead,
Led Zeppelin, Elton John, Andy Warhol, Deepak Chopra, Scissor Sisters,
Grace Jones, Cyndi Lauper, Blondie, Prince, Marilyn Manson, Yoko Ono,
Britney Spears, Cher, Klaus Nomi, Donatella Versace, Leigh Bowery,
Isabella Blow, and Osho.
Suffers from hair loss due to years of dyeing her hair.