Before growing up to take the world by storm, a baby girl named Beyoncé Giselle Knowles was born in Houston, Texas, on Sept. 4, 1981.
At the early age of 7, the starlet began to hone her dancing and vocal skills, which would earn her more than 30 awards at local talent competitions. Eager to break into the recording industry, Beyoncé teamed up with family friend Kelly Rowland and classmates LaTavia Roberson and LeToya Luckett to form an all-girls group in the early 1990s.
Mathew Knowles, Beyoncé’s father, banked on the girls’ star potential by quitting his six-figure job to manage them full-time. His confidence and their hard-work and talents paid off in the ultimate formation of Destiny’s Child in 1993. Over the next eight years, the group would undergo a series of changes and successes and attain a wealth of accolades and awards, ultimately emerging as one of the most popular female groups of all time. After Destiny’s Child announced their hiatus in 2001, Beyoncé continued the acting career that she had launched while in the group.
Her debut album as a solo artist, Dangerously in Love, was released on June 24, 2003, and had a hugely successful reception. The breakout album won the star a number of record-breaking titles at the time, including the first artist in 20 years and the first female artist in history to have both an album and single debut atop the U.S. and U.K. charts simultaneously. She also snagged a record-tying number of wins at the 46th Grammy Awards.
Her success ballooned as the years went on. The albums B’Day, I Am…Sasha Fierce and 4, along with her film performance in the Academy Award darling and box-office hit Dreamgirls and her marriage to long-time boyfriend, hip hop mogul Jay-Z, further cemented Beyoncé as one of the most iconic pop stars of the millennium.
Motherhood was yet another title added to her ever-growing list of undertakings when she and Jay-Z welcomed their first child, Blue Ivy, to the star-studded family in January 2012.
Currently, the siren-voiced superstar is recording tracks for her highly anticipated fifth studio album while performing on her Mrs. Carter Show World Tour.
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(Photo: Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)