She was born in the small town of Charlemagne, Quebec, with a singing voice that her mother encouraged. By the age of five she was performing for anyone who would listen.
In 1980 her mother brought her to agent/manager René Angélil, who so believed in her voice that he mortgaged his home to help finance her career. In 1981 they released her first record in her native French language, "La Voix du bon Dieu" ("The Voice of God"), that made her an instant star in Quebec. The following year she competed and won the gold medal at the Tokyo World Song Festival. Her career continued to blossom, and in 1987 she produced the album Incognito, which became a huge success. Approached by Swiss song writers Atilla Serefthug and Nella Martinetti she was chosen to represent Switzerland in the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest singing "Ne partez pas sans moi". By winning the Contest in Dublin, Ireland on April 30, 1988, she received a large boost to her career in Europe. Her first English-language album, Unison (1991), expanded her international recognition with the breakthrough single, "Where Does My Heart Beat Now".
Many of the hit singles that followed over the next ten years (including a cover of the James Bond song "If You Asked Me To", "Water from the Moon", and "Nothing Broken but My Heart") were written by Diane Warren, a composer best known for power ballads. However, Céline Dion finally showcased her talents as a songwriter when she co-wrote "Don't Save It All for Christmas Day" for the 1998 Christmas album, These Are Special Times and "Treat Her Like a Lady" on her Let's Talk About Love album, 1997.
Dion's work has featured heavily in the soundtrack to a number of hit films. In North America, and working in the United States, her song for Disney's Beauty and the Beast (written by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman), "Because You Loved Me" (from 1995's Up Close and Personal, another Diane Warren composition), and a cover of Nat King Cole's "When I Fall in Love" (from 1993's Sleepless in Seattle), added to her growing stardom. By 1997 her records and her rendition of James Horner and Will Jennings' song "My Heart Will Go On", written for the motion picture Titanic (but making its debut on her album Let's Talk about Love), made her the top-grossing star of the music world, with more than 50 million records sold. One year later, she performed "The Prayer" for the 1998 animated film Quest for Camelot. Her last movie song before her short two-year hiatus to have a child came in 1999 with "Then You Look at Me" (from Bicentennial Man, also written by Horner and Jennings).
Dion is also no stranger to participating in tribute albums, such as a 1995 collection of Carole King songs called Tapestry Revisited and a 1997 double-CD set commemorating Diana, Princess of Wales.
In 2002 after her two-year hiatus, she returned to the music world with a new album ("A New Day has Come") and a contract to play again in Las Vegas, Nevada. In March 2003 Céline was everywhere, on the 25 of March Céline's show opened in Las Vegas, her album One Heart was released and her own perfume line was revealed. And, in 2003, moviegoers once again heard Céline Dion's voice on the soundtrack to Mona Lisa Smile.
In October 2003 her French album 1 Fille & 4 Types was released. The album is yet again a collaboration between Céline and Jean Jacques Goldman (joined by 3 of his friends Gildas Arzel, Eric benzi & Jacques Veneruso) who had previously worked with her on "S'il suffisait d'aimer" and "D'Eux" (also known as the french album which sold 8 000 000 copies worlwide and which makes it the most sold french album of all times). Critics have called it Céline's best and most natural album. Céline herself has referred to it as "the album of pleasure".
She is married to her manager René Angélil and has a son, René-Charles Angélil (born January 2001).
To date Céline has sold around 160 million albums making her the best selling female artist of all time.