Olivia Newton-John has been awarded the Companion of the Order of Australia in the 2019 Australia Day Honours.
The Companion of the Order of Australia is the highest award in Honours list. The award is for Olivia’s work in the community and her creation of the Olivia Newton-John Wellness and Research Centre in Melbourne for cancer patients, as well as for her achievements in music.
Olivia has been raising funds for cancer research since her own diagnosis in 1992.
Olivia was born in England in 1948. The family migrated to Australia in 1954 when she was six. At 14, she formed her first all-girl group and soon became a regular on Australian television.
It was on The Go! Show where Olivia met Pat Carroll who became her duet partner. Pat married John Farrar who was the songwriter behind Olivia’s biggest hits including ‘You’re The One That I Want’, ‘Hopelessly Devoted To You’, ‘Physical’, ‘Magic’ and ‘Have You Ever Been Mellow’.
Olivia had her first international hit song with a cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘If Not For You’ (#7, 1971, Australia and #25, USA) and first number one with ‘Banks of the Ohio’ (1971, Australia).
Her first Australian and US number one was the Peter Allen penned ‘I Honestly Love You’.
In 1978 Olivia’s career reached a whole new level as the co-star of ‘Grease’ alongside John Travolta. The movie made her a superstar and set her up as one of the biggest international stars of the 80s.
Olivia’s most recent album is the Christmas album ‘Friends for Christmas’ with John Farnham.