#OBITUARY: Olivia Newton-John

#OBITUARY: Olivia Newton-John

Performer in the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest Olivia Newton-John has passed away at the age of 73. She was there in Brighton when ABBA won. She finished fourth.

Olivia Newton-John was born in 1948 in Cambridge, emigrating to Australia aged six with her parents and two older siblings. By the early 1970s she was back in the UK, and was already an established star by the time Cliff Richard suggested she got the gig for the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest.

For Eurovision, Olivia performed all six songs in the BBC’s Song for Europe. They were previewed on Saturday night TV, before a special show where viewers voting via postcard. Long live love won, along way ahead of Angel eyes. In the contest Olivia finished fourth.

After Eurovision, Olivia made it big in the USA, starring in the 1978 musical Grease, starring opposite John Travolta. It spawned a number of singles, and she became only the second female vocalist to have top singles in the Top Five of the Billboard Hot 100 at the same time. A pop career followed, including the song Physical with its risqué video.

In the 1980s she was diagnosed with breast cancer, leading her to become an advocate and fundraiser for cancer charities, and other humanitarian causes.

Olivia died at her home in California. She leaves her second husband and a daughter by her first marriage.

Here’s her performance at the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest.

Author: John Stanton

Source: Eurovision Ireland

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