teen pop sensation
Birthplace: Kentwood, La.
The teen phenom burst onto the music scene with the 1999 release of her vaguely promiscuous single, “…Baby One More Time”. Spears entered show business at age 8, when she auditioned for a role on The Mickey Mouse Club. She was too young for the show, but she was impressive enough to earn the services of an agent and a slot at New York's Off-Broadway Dance Center. She appeared in the Off-Broadway play Ruthless at age 10, and finally made it into the lineup of The Mickey Mouse Club at age 11. Other Mouseketeers included Justin Timberlake and Joshua “JC” Chasez, who are both part of boy band 'N Sync. She continued on the show for two years, and signed with Jive in 1996. She finished recording …Baby, One More Time in 1998 and embarked on a “mall tour” to promote the record before its Jan. 1999 release. The aggressive promotion worked; the album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard charts. She proved that she's not a one-hit wonder with the 2000 release of Oops!…I Did It Again, which sold a record 1,319,193 copies in its first week on sale. She received less than critical acclaim in her first appearance on film in Crossroads (2002). In Jan. 2004 Spears wed childhood friend Jason Alexander, a marriage that lasted all of 55 hours. Later that year she married dancer Kevin Federline and in Sept. 2005 their child, Sean Preston was born.