Celine Dion: I am a woman assuming her own destiny, it’s never too late

ELLE June Cover Celine CLs

Some days you just need a little Celine Dion to get going. I always enjoy covering Celine because she’s a nice burst of fresh energy. It’s slightly contagious as in, I feel a little more optimistic when I finish reading a Celine interview. Celine covers the latest issue of Elle. It’s a good interview, you can tell the interviewer is equally taken with her. Much of the talk is about how Celine has become a fashion icon, which is true, but she’s always enjoyed fashion and is not afraid to take risks. Part of me thinks she’s getting so much attention for it now because she’s getting it right, unlike some of her earlier attempts. But this interview suggests her current fashion stands out because of her confidence. And that confidence, according to Celine, comes from her reclaiming her life.

On weeping at Valentino during the spring 2019 couture season: “The first song was ‘The First Time I Ever Saw Your Face,’ which was part of my wedding. The music starts and this dream comes, a lady, a beautiful rose. All you saw was her face in this amazing pink gown…It was so emotional; I was speechless. I didn’t want to cry. I was worried Mr. Valentino was looking at my reaction. To be honest, it felt like I was making a scene, but I was overwhelmed.”

On discovering herself as she’s gotten older: “Now I am discovering myself more and more. I am a woman assuming her own destiny, full of energy and in love with life. It’s never too late to start. At 51, I have the sense that I am at my pinnacle!”

On her approach to her new music: “I had a great time when I recorded 20 years ago, but now I really feel like I can speak up. If I’m not part of my own project, what am I really doing here? Crying at Valentino and spending money on clothes?”

[From Elle]

I love all of this. Celine has stepped out with strength after tragedy. And it’s not that we don’t know how much she misses René, but she’s thriving and after his passing while honoring him too. I love that she is outspoken about assuming her own destiny because I do think that René held her destiny for most of their years together.

The story about her crying at the Valentino show is very touching… which is why I felt bad for laughing out loud when I read the first line of that quote. Decades ago, my mother decided The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face should be one of the her and my father’s songs. So she played it in the background one night and my dad crinkles his nose and asked, “what is this crap?” He proceeded to eviscerate the song to the point that we were all in tears from laughing so hard. To this day, if it plays, I sing my father’s version.

As for the fashion, Celine was styled by Charles Varenne for the shoot. The only outfit I like on its own is this sequined pantsuit but, to the interviewer’s point, I love all the looks on Celine because she wears them with so much enthusiasm.

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Photo credit: Tom Munro/ELLE

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32 Responses to “Celine Dion: I am a woman assuming her own destiny, it’s never too late”

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  1. lucy2 says:

    I like the green dress.
    It’s nice to see her find some freedom in her own life. She was with her husband from SUCH a young age, and I don’t think she got to experience a lot of life outside of that.

  2. Lucia says:

    So funny thing, I found myself triggered on the Anjelica Huston article regarding gross older men in Quebec and now we have Celine from Quebec.

    I know this is not a popular opinion but I think Celine is finally seeing that she was groomed – in a way- from a very young age. Rene and Celine were always on the up and up legally and I don’t think it was necessarily Rene doing the grooming (I think it was her mother, lots of rumors about that). I actually think Rene genuinely respected her and tried to protect her as much as they loved one another. But at the end of the day he was a stubborn old Quebecois who felt he had to run his household and his wife. I think she still loves Rene but I also think she has more control over her life than she’s ever had before. I’m very proud of Celine but very sad she could not get away from some of Quebec’s traps. But she’s always lived her best life and I’m proud of that. At the same time, I hate that Celine’s romance was seen as a fairy tale and many in the Anglophone media in America don’t dig deeper on that.

    I can’t blame Celine for crying at The Valentino show after hearing a song at her wedding. I hear or see certain things and get overwhelmed by memories too.

    • olive says:

      agreed, I think Celine is taking control of her own life for the first time ever. also, there’s lots and lots of gossip online that Celine is now living her best life as a queer woman and is very happy. Nicole Cliffe tweeted a thinly-disguised blind about her, that multiple people have slid into her DMs about Celine.

      • Lucia says:

        @olive
        I wouldn’t trust blinds at all. They’re nasty made up things most of the time.

        Maybe it is true but in Quebec, a lot of people are violently homophobic so I can see that being conflicting for her. But I am glad she has come out as supportive of LGBTQ issues. I find it unlikely she will admit anything regarding her personal life anymore. I’m glad Celine escaped Quebec. She’s been my idol and hero since I was a little girl.

      • olive says:

        @Lucia she’s since deleted the tweet, probably because of everyone IDing celine by name in response, but this is what it said:

        “a very famous older female singer popped like nine times in my gossip DMs as queer and happier now than ever, and there is no reason to out her, but let’s just send our warmth and love into the universe for her continued flourishing”

      • Lucia says:

        Well if there’s an ounce of truth to it, it makes me love Celine that much more. But I hate blinds.

    • Wow says:

      I was just talking to a Canadian colleague who was venting about something from up there and she said “Quebec is Canada, but its stuck 50 years in the past on progress.” The way you described things makes that statement make more sense.

      • Lucia says:

        50 years? Try more like 100 in the more rural parts. It’s awful in Quebec. Domestic violence is a seriously problem. I had to delete part of a comment on the Anjelica article regarding older men preying on young girls being normal in Quebec. I saw girls as young as 14 get pregnant by older men and I mean mid-late 20s, 30s, even 40s. This was in the 90s. I got hit on by older men who saw me as a target. My sister is trans and almost got killed after being beaten close to death which is what prompted us to leave. So many people in Quebec are bigoted, racist, homophobic, and just angry at the entire world which makes them incredibly violent.

        My biological mother is an alcoholic with borderline personality which is far more common in Quebec than you think. I wasn’t even allowed to learn English until I moved in with my mama and papa when I was 11 because my mother was 100% brainwashed by the Bloc and I think she may have even been a supporter (or a member of) Le Front. I don’t even know the story of how my biological father wound up in Quebec after being a refugee from Chile or how he wound up with my bio mom. I forgave him but I will never speak to my biological mother again. She is an angry and hateful creature who tried to make me into an angry and hateful creature.

        For me, living my best life meant getting the hell out of there and never returning. I will never step foot in Quebec again for as long as I live. I will never speak Quebecois again for as long as I live. I was lucky to get out. I feel bad for so many women just stuck there.

      • LadyMTL says:

        I live in Quebec (albeit in Montreal, so not rural at all) and there is still a ridiculous amount of racism, homophobia, Islamophobia here…you name it, it’s here. I thankfully did not have it anywhere near as rough as Lucia but it isn’t at all uncommon for people here to toss out comments like it’s no big deal. Hell, our own government is trying to ban anyone who works in the public sector – teachers, cops, doctors, etc – from wearing any religious symbols at work. So if a doctor wears a kippah or a primary school teacher wears a hijab, too bad for them.

        Hell, I remember being about 10-11 years old in line at a McDonalds and an older woman turned and gave me a once-over and then asked “What are you? You’re Greek?” I was a bit puzzled but said no, I’m Middle Eastern, and then just got my fries and moved on. It was only later that I realized how ridiculous it was to be asked something like that.

      • Lucia says:

        Wow. I ranted hard there. But it was nice to get it all out.

      • Janie says:

        As someone who lives in Quebec, it’s a little more nuanced and weird than that. Quebec is incredibly culturally insular. I remember I saw a stand-up show by a black comedian in which he said something like: “here, they don’t hate me because I’m black; they hate me because I’m not a francophone.” A lot of people in Quebec will be racist towards a PoC from the US, Asia, other parts of Canada, etc. but have no problem with French-speaking PoC immigrants from Algeria, Burundi, Haiti, etc. Other Quebecois are just racist towards all PoC. Racism is a massive problem in Quebec, but it’s a little more complicated than racism in Alberta or Ontario.

        Historically, Quebec has actually been more progressive than the rest of Canada on LGBTQ+ rights. It was the first province to include sexual orientation in its Human Rights Code and make it illegal to discriminate against gay people. This happened in 1977; it took almost thirty years for Alberta, PEI, and the Northwest Territories to follow suit. The crazy Quebec separatist party supported legalizing gay marriage.

        There’s also the issue of separating the cities from the rural communities. Montreal and Quebec City (especially Montreal) are way more progressive than rural Quebec. Montreal actually has a neighbourhood called the “Gay Village.”

        Quebec is ridiculously complicated culturally and it’s difficult to make blanket statements. Totally agree on old Quebecois men, though. Every time I get sexually harassed on the street, it’s by a gross old French dude and they’re always incredibly obscene. Legault and the CAQ need to be voted out stat and I’m definitely going to be campaigning for their opposition. Seriously, f*ck Legault. Sexism and racism are massive problems here, but it’s important to understand the complexities behind the issues or they’ll never be solved.

        Also important to remember: Quebec is the one province that is overwhelmingly voting Liberal in the federal election. As someone who’s terrified of Andrew Scheer and his conservative Nazi-baiters, I’m pretty proud of that.

    • Nev says:

      That Valentino show had me in tears as well. Just stunning and inspiring. Such beauty.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      I have always loved her and she has always been a bit bonkers but she has blossomed since her husband passed – I think they loved each other but he was controlling. He was a serious gambler who like to gamble millions in the casino’s and there are many rumours as that was the reason her Vegas residency lasted as long as it did – to pay off his seriously massive gambling debts. I don’t recall reading anything about him mis-managing her money but he certainly had a lot of control over it.

      • Lucia says:

        That wouldn’t surprise me at all, honestly. I will say that Celine could have done a lot worse than him. Growing up the way I did, I think Rene’s behavior was pretty mild by Quebecois standards. I can’t hate on the guy, he did more to protect her than her own family did.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        I don’t know much about her family. Whats the tea there?

      • Lucia says:

        I want to start off by saying that Celine speaks very highly of her family . But she is the youngest of 14 and also that sadly the behavior I mention isn’t atypical in Quebec at all.

        Her mom was a stage singer in Quebec at one point. She saw Celine’s talent and pushed her onto the stage. She was a stage mom through and through. I personally think she did more to mess Celine up than Rene ever did. Celine had a very prominent career in Quebec from the time she was 13 on and she always looked and dressed incredibly older. Celine didn’t even learn English until her late teens/early 20s. Her mother saw nothing wrong with encouraging her relationship with Rene who was 26 years older than her. Like I said in previous posts, that behavior isn’t frowned upon in Quebec and more normal than people realize. However, there have long been rumors that a very young Celine is why his marriage to his wife broke up and there are also rumors that her mother also had an affair with Rene but I find that highly unlikely since she is older than Rene. I don’t really want to believe that Rene would sleep with a 15 year old girl he was managing. He was a very talented manager and is also responsible for many Quebec talents. Celine was his golden goose but I think he had a reasonable code of ethics. Men cheating on women is also the norm in Quebec so I can’t imagine his wife was incredibly angry over it.

        There’s also been rumors of rampant alcoholism amongst her brothers. But Quebec being Quebec, their arrests for drunken behavior go unnoticed and half of the time they don’t even get arrested. They bribe their way out of almost anything. The entire family sponges off of Celine and she allows it (although it’s said Rene tried to cut them off many times, that’s the one thing Celine wouldn’t have she wanted her mother and father taken care of – and by proxy her siblings were cared for). It’s said that Celine has also had a contentious relationship with a lot of her female siblings too but they don’t speak against her so it can’t be that bad.

        That’s the tea I know. I think a lot of it is true but at the end of the day, Celine seems to have a decent relationship with her family. So I guess that’s all that matters. Just a lot of Quebec nonsense going on amongst them.

  3. Keira says:

    I love how they styled her. With bangs even! Yes!

  4. Audrey says:

    Why is the bottom half of her face hidden in 3 out of the 4 photos? If she’s “finding” herself now, the photos seem to symbolize that she has no voice (by hiding her mouth).

  5. Hikari says:

    I love how she is unapologetically herself now.

  6. Nev says:

    She looks fantastic.

  7. Tiffany says:

    Got my ticket to see her this fall.

    I cannot wait. I am so excited.

    • Lilly (with the double_L) says:

      Surprised that I felt envious reading that. Guess that means ticket buying is in my future. Have fun.

  8. stephanie says:

    i think she is fabulous and is getting her groove back

    go girl

  9. MLouise says:

    to comment on everyone living in Quebec like this as if this opinion is a fact is very concerning, as if everyone there is all but the same.

    • Janie says:

      There is a very real dark side to Quebec that has been mentioned here. It definitely exists and is a massive problem. But I do think it’s unfair to paint all of Quebec in a negative light. Quebec was the first province to make it illegal to discriminate against gay people (in 1977). There are a lot of really progressive areas and communities that work to combat the dark parts of the culture. I really love Quebec despite having experienced its dark side because there are a lot of bright spots here too. I would never want to live anywhere else.

  10. KLO says:

    Celine is getting more awesome by day. I love her look and her clothes. And the haircut is great, I like it.
    I really like how she wears out-there fashion often but still looks unmistakably like herself. She is really WEARING the clothes.