Top moments that made Olivia Newton-John an icon

Aug 10, 2022
Olivia Newton-John's most memorable moments. Source: Getty

Heartbreak from the passing of Dame Olivia Newton-John has been felt across the world, with many people mourning the loss of such an iconic legend in entertainment history.

Newton-John’s sweet, friendly disposition fast made her a household name and adored by all.

She quickly developed a love for entertaining when at age 14 she formed Sol Four, an all-girl group with three classmates that often performed in her brother-in-law’s coffee shop before featuring in a number of variety shows where the young star’s talent was showcased for Australia and the world to see.

Following a series of international hit songs and iconic film appearances the beloved British-Australian leaves behind an extraordinary legacy, as the world reflects on their favourite Olivia Newton-John moments Starts at 60 have compiled a list of the top moments that made Newton-John a true entertainment icon.


Newton-John’s 1974 song Long Live Love, saw the singing actress represent the United Kingdom in the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest.

Newton-John looked like a dream while performing the song, which charted at No.11 in Australia, in her floor-length blue gown, reminiscent of a luxury night-gown with flowing sleeves.

The star’s performance saw her place fourth in the contest, losing to global popular sensation ABBA who performed their hit song Waterloo. 

First Solo Hit

Newton-John’s career has seen an incredible catalogue of memorable songs, but the star topped the charts for the first time with her 1974 hit I Honestly Love You.

The song saw Newton-John claim her first Grammy at the 17th Grammy Awards in 1975, with the single winning Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance in the female category.

The song soared to the top three in the Billboard Hot 100 in just six weeks of its release, moving on to spend two weeks at No.1.


Newton-John truly became a household name with her iconic role in the 1978 film adaptation of the Broadway musical Grease. 

Starring as sweet and innocent Sandy, alongside co-star John Travolta as tough but loveable Danny, Newton-John’s career officially took off as the movie became a box-office hit and became the second highest-grossing film in its opening weekend, second to Titanic.

The film is still popular today, with it’s soundtrack charting at No.1 for 12 consecutive weeks and still remains one of the most popular and best-selling albums to date.

The soundtrack had three Top 5 singles for the star, Hopelessly Devoted to You, Summer Nights and the platinum You’re the One That I Want.


Triggered by her Grease character’s transformation from sweet to sexy, Newton-John used the movie’s momentum to change her own image and in 1981 she released the double platinum Physical.

The risqué and provocative track reached No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was ranked as the biggest song of the 80s, despite being banned from a number of broadcasters for its sexual tone.

Newton-John’s iconic music video for the song saw the track become an aerobic anthem, Physical has since sold more than 10 million copies globally.

Olivia Newton-John Cancer Centre and Research Institute

Whilst her life in entertainment slowed down towards the end, Newton-John continued to make an impact in the world, creating the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Centre and Research Institute,

Diagnosed with cancer herself, the centre provides support and therapies to those suffering from the disease, as well as world-leading research into treatments.


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A post shared by ONJ Cancer Centre (@onjcancercentre)


There’s no denying that Newton-John has left a significant impact on the world with her legacy living on through the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Centre and Research Institute as well as her notable contribution to the entertainment industry.

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