Lady Gaga

Follow the pop star's fairy-tale path from the Bitter End to Radio City.

  • Janary 20, 2006

  • January 2007

  • August 19, 2008

  • October 23, 2008

  • August 2009

  • October 3, 2009

  • November 16, 2009

  • December 7, 2009

  • January 20, 2010

Janary 20, 2006

January 20, 2006
Billed under her pre-Gaga appellation, the equally flamboyant (brunet!) Stefani Germanotta performs at Greenwich Village’s storied singer-songwriter dumping ground, the Bitter End. The NYU student’s performance, now immortalized on YouTube, begins with the lyric “Listen, I’ve got the sickest ambition.” Ambition, eh? Who would have guessed?!?

November 2006
Music producer Rob Fusaro “discovers” Germanotta and says that her style reminds him of Queen’s “Radio Gaga.” Arise, Lady Gaga!

January 2007
Contracted as a songwriter for Interscope, Gaga writes hits for Britney Spears and the Pussycat Dolls. While she’s warbling a demo, Akon walks past the studio and likes what he hears. She’s signed up as a proper pop star.

August 19, 2008
Interscope releases Lady Gaga’s debut album, The Fame, which debuts at No. 17 on the Billboard 200.

October 23, 2008
TONY profiles Gaga the week she opens for New Kids on the Block and headlines Highline Ballroom. “I’m just really fascinated with pop culture, fashion, media and how Americans are so obsessed with celebrities,” she reveals. “There’s really an art to fame.”

May 7, 2009
Having shipped 1 million copies, The Fame is certified platinum in the U.S.

August 2009
American soldiers are embroiled in two wars, the economy is in disrepair, and Dick Cheney is still at large, yet the Internet is aflutter over reports that Lady Gaga is in possession of a small penis. (Somewhere in the world, Jamie Lee Curtis lets out a big sigh of relief.)

October 3, 2009
While serving as Saturday Night Live’s musical guest, she performs in a sketch, dueling with an older, pushier bleach-blond pop star. “Hey, guess what, Madonna,” Gaga charges. “I’m totally hotter than you.” And so, a disco stick passes between generations.

November 16, 2009
Gaga guests on Gossip Girl wearing a 30-foot-long dress. Even she is surprised by its size.

November 17, 2009
But I love you more! Gaga and Beyonc guest on each other’s singles.

December 7, 2009
Wearing a poofy red dress and a glittery mask—as if she left the house intending to fight Batman but was sidetracked—the pop star curtsies before Queen Elizabeth II after appearing at the Royal Variety Performance. Her Royal Highness seems amused—and perhaps a tiny bit jealous.

January 20, 2010
Four years to the day after her Bitter End showcase, Lady Gaga begins a four-night stand headlining the slightly more glamorous Radio City Music Hall. Tickets are scarce.

Live photos from Radio City Music Hall
The Lady Gaga guide to NYC
Lady Gaga's best looks of 2009

See more in music