Dana International is far more than a successful pop singer. She launched a revolution in local and global pop culture. She emerged from the rebuffed fringes of the LGBT scene at the end of the 1980s and early 1990s after the Gulf War had ended and people in Tel-Aviv resumed their celebration of life with an unprecedented blossoming of new nightclubs – a decadent underground phenomenon that astonished Israeli society.
During the summer of 1992, Dana International sprang from this scene and onto the national media and radio stations with her first song Saida Sultana. Although the music establishment ignored and disparaged the song, it was embraced by the audience and became a hit that summer, and Israel welcomed a sensational new pop singer who not only boasts a slightly unconventional name, but also a new persona that Israel had not encountered until then. Dana was the first Israeli artist to speak courageously about her sexual orientation. Her bold and lavish costumes, her dancers, her candidness to say what nobody else dared to say, and her songs in Hebrew, Arabic, gibberish, English mixed with Yemenite, her body language that resonates with international music and culture and the headlines that shouted: the singer that is dominating the club dancefloors was, until recently, a man.
As a result of the unanticipated success of Dana International’s song, a small independent record company, AMP, offered to release a full album. Her stellar breakthrough into the mainstream occurred with her second album, with her hit songs Yesh Banot (There are girls), Ani Lo Yechola Biladecha (I can’t without you) and Nosa'at LePetra (I’m going to Petra); with her participation and second-place win in the Eurovision qualifiers in 1995; with her being named “Singer of the Year”; with her music clips that set a new standard in pop music, and more.
“I never dreamed that my career would reach such a scale,” says Dana. “I was taken totally by surprise that the audience and the people embraced me, unlike the establishment, in which even the old elite radio stations, like “Galatz” disparaged this type of music.”
Dana International Eurovision win in 1997 with DIVA , exploded her career all over Europe , where she continues performing for her very loyal fans. After her third album in 1998 containing the hit song “Cinque Milla,” she was selected to represent Israel in the Eurovision Song Contest held in England and Dana won first place. From that point on, Dana took Europe by storm, taking the story of the early years of her career in Israel and replicating it, this time, on a global scale. Dana International is a transgender star who reflects ultimate femininity through her confident, sexy and unapologetic performances, costumes and public statements. She starred in Amnesty’s global campaign “Gay Rights are Human Rights” and became the uncompromising spokeswoman and defender of the LGBT community in Israel.
Dana has released 14 albums, three internationally, dozens of hit songs and unique video clips. Dana International is a mainstay on the playlists of all-time favourite songs in LGBT clubs around the world
Dana returned to Eurovision this May 2019, with a couple of amazing special performances as Israel hosted the Eurovision in Tel Aviv.