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Geri Halliwell was known as "Ginger Spice" in the all-girl, British pop group the Spice Girls. Halliwell has the most No. 1 singles of any female musician in U.K. history.
Spice Girls - Full Biography (44:48)
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The full episode of "Biography: Spice Girls."
Chosen at an audition,the five members of the Spice Girls--nicknamed Sporty, Scary, Posh, Baby, and Ginger--grew to symbolize “girl power,” and their music’s message struck a chord with thousands of young women.
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Geri Halliwell was born on August 6, 1972 in Watford, England. In 1994, she became "Ginger Spice" in the all-girl, British pop group the Spice Girls. Halliwell quit in 1998 to pursue her solo career, starting with her single, "Look At Me," which sold more than 1 million copies worldwide. Since her run with the Spice Girls, Halliwell has authored a series of children's books and started a swim. Additionally,
"If you want to know Geri Halliwell, listen to my album: it tells you more about me than a documentary ever could."
"I have always wanted a solo career, deep in the darkest pit of myself, but I didn't dare admit it to myself even. It took me a long time to confront my fears."
she has been has the most No. 1 singles of any female musician in U.K. history.
Geraldine Estelle Halliwell, known as "Geri," was born on August 6, 1972 in North Watford, England. She was raised by father Laurence Francis Halliwell, of English and Swedish descent, and half-Spanish mother Ana Maria, from Huesca. Halliwell speaks fluent Spanish and English. She attened the Watford Grammar School for Girls, and took her A-Levels at the Camden School for Girls. In college, she studied English literature and finance.
After college, Halliwell worked odd jobs, including as a topless model, a cage dancer at a club in Majorca and a presenter on the Turkish TV show Let's Make a Deal.
In 1994, Halliwell became a member of the British, all-girl pop group the Spice Girls. She replaced Suzanne Tinker, who couldn't make it to the last audition. Signed to Virgin Records in September 1995, along with Halliwell, the group was comprised of Victoria Beckham, Melanie Brown, Emma Bunton and Melanie Chisholm. The Spice Girls released their debut single, "Wannabe," in 1996, which hit No. 1 in more than 30 countries, and instituted the girls as a global phenomenon. The song became the biggest-selling single by an all-female group. In November 1996, the Spice Girls released their debut album, Spice in Europe, which was so successful it has been compared to Beatlemania.
Halliwell was dubbed "Ginger Spice" by Top of the Pops magazine in 1996, and became known for her outrageous, sexually suggestive outfits, platform heels and red hair.
After drifting apart in the late '90s to pursue other projects, the Spice Girls reunited for a series of concerts in 2007 and 2008. In June 2012, the group reunited again, this time to announce the creation of a new musical about the rise and fall of the Spice Girls. Viva Forever!, named after the group's 1998 No. 1 single, is slated to open in London by the end of 2012.
In August 2012, the Spice Girls, including Halliwell, performed at the closing ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympic Games, held in London.
On May 30, 1998, Halliwell publicly announced that she would be leaving the Spice Girls due to differences within the group. The announcement generated much controversy, and the other members were forced to complete their North American tour without her.
Not long after, in 1999, Halliwell released her first solo single, "Look at Me," from her album, Schizophonic, which sold more than 1 million copies worldwide. Her second album, Scream If You Wanna Go Faster, and its hit single, "It's Raining Men," won the International Song of the Year Award at the 2002 NRJ Music Awards.
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The British all-female pop group the Spice Girls dominated the music charts in the 1990s with their catchy lyrics and fierce attitudes. The group began with five, young aspiring performers, and blew up into a '90s frenzy of platform shoes, choreographed dance numbers, and of course, "Girl Power." Under the personas of "Sporty," "Baby," "Scary," "Ginger" and "Posh," the five superstars sold 65 million records worldwide, making them the best-selling girl group of all time. To this day, their fan base still proves strong, as they reunited in 2007 for a sold out tour, the first since 1999. Explore this collection for full biographies, photos and videos, of the five girls who make up this iconic group.
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In the 1990s, London's artists and cultural tastemakers embraced their British roots. Pop acts like Oasis, Elastica and the Spice Girls dominated 90's music, and reinforced British pride with symbolic use of the Union Flag—Oasis member Noel Gallagher famously used a Union Jack guitar while "Ginger Spice" Geri Halliwell wore the symbol on her trademark, flashy dress. The period was also marked by influential designers like John Galliano and Alexander McQueen, whose unique designs established numerous fashion trends for the decade. Biography.com celebrates these prominent figures, and the many others who led the way for "Cool Britannia."
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