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Confessions of being 'obnoxious'

Britney Spears has her say-so


Web posted on: Monday, August 02, 1999 3:47:22 PM EDT

Bill Tush
CNN Entertainment News Correspondent

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Britney Spears has passed the first test for any teen-age singing sensation. Her debut album "... Baby, One More Time" has sold more than five million copies, while her video of the same title has earned her three MTV Music Video Award nominations.

Along the way, she's also collected some ardent fans.

"You don't understand," says one male admirer. "I live for Britney Spears."

Her MTV nominations are in the categories of best female video, best pop video and best choreography. The video for "... Baby, One More Time" takes place in a high school -- her idea.

"I thought it would be really cool," Spears says, "if we were all in school, and we bored out of our minds -- like most kids are when they are in school. They start daydreaming about dancing and singing. You know, it's what a lot of teen-agers can relate to."

The 17-year-old Louisiana native also is calling the shots when it comes to designing the look for her current tour.

"All outfits that were done on the show were all my designs," Spears says. "As far as all the concept, as far as the whole tour goes, I did everything. Usually the director, the choreographer will come in and have a lot of ideas. They had a little say-so, but I had the main say-so."


Listen to a clip of "...Baby One More Time"

Audio clip: 250k MPEG-3
Audio clip: 340k WAV
Video clip: 1Mb QuickTime

The Mickey Mouse years

When it comes to performing in her younger years, Spears admits she was "actually really obnoxious.

"I was always singing to the radio and always dancing and doing my own thing," she says. "It wasn't until my mom took me to the dance teacher, and she was like, 'Well, your daughter can sing. Why don't you start entering her into singing and dance contests?'"

Her mom took that advice, stage-mothering Spears into dance showcases and church choirs. At age 8, she auditioned for a role on the Disney Channel's "The Mickey Mouse Club" show. Although she was too young for the job, the producers apparently saw potential and helped her enroll at New York's Off-Broadway Dance Center and the Professional Performing Arts School.

Following a series of television commercials and stage appearances, at 11-year-old Spears finally joined "The Mickey Mouse Club" for two seasons. After that, she pursued a solo career, signing with Jive Records this year.

Ever since, she's been traipsing through malls and concert halls across the country, accumulating flattery and "family" along the way.

"Each city I go into ... 'This is your cousin so-and-so and can they come back stage?' Spears says. "All of a sudden, everyone's kin to me."

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