In 2004, the High Point, North Carolina native became the season three winner of Fox’s American Idol. Later that year, Fantasia released her platinum-selling debut album Free Yourself and became the first artist in the history of the Billboard Hot 100 chart to debut at #1 with her first single, “I Believe." Fantasia’s second single, “Truth Is,” spent 14 weeks at #1, making her the first singer to simultaneously have two of the top three songs on the Billboard chart. Fantasia’s 2006 eponymous second album featured the #1 R&B single, “When I See U,” and reached gold status. In 2010, Fantasia released the critically acclaimed Back To Me, which featured the hit single “Bittersweet” that earned her first ever Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance and a NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Song. Back To Me debuted at #1 on the Billboard R&B Albums chart, #2 on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums chart, and not only marked Fantasia’s first #1 R&B album but also her highest Billboard Top 200 chart ranking. In 2013, Fantasia released her fourth studio album, Side Effects of You which debuted at #1 on the Billboard R&B Albums Chart and #2 on the Billboard Top 200, marking her second consecutive positions on these charts. On July 29, 2016, Fantasia released her fifth studio album, The Definition Of…. The album debuted at #1 on Billboard’s R&B chart, #2 on the Overall Albums and R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, and #6 on the Billboard 200 chart. The high chart entries mark Fantasia’s third consecutive #1 R&B album debut, her fourth top ten debut on the Billboard 200, and earned Fantasia another Grammy nominated for “Best Traditional R&B Performance.”
In addition to being a mainstay in music, Fantasia adds author and actress to her growing list of accomplishments. In 2006, she released her New York Times bestselling memoir, Life Is Not a Fairytale, and starred as herself in the Lifetime movie of the same name. In 2007, Fantasia landed the coveted role of Celie in Broadway’s The Color Purple for which she won a Theater World Award. Fantasia returned to Broadway in 2013 as the first celebrity engagement in After Midnight, a dance-focused musical that celebrated Harlem’s iconic Cotton Club during the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920’s and 1930’s. After receiving rave reviews, Fantasia joined the cast of After Midnight for a second run in May 2014.