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Grande will receive the 2014 Billboard Rising Star award and Menzel will accept the Breakthrough Artist of the Year award, a new honor at the awards event that’s now in its ninth year. Swift was previously announced as the 2014 Billboard Woman of the Year.
Grande follows in the footsteps of previous Billboard Rising Star honorees that include Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj and Janelle Monae, among others, marking exceptional success early in their careers and demonstrating remarkable potential to make lasting contributions to the music industry.
“To be recognized alongside some of the most influential women in the music business is such an incredible honor,” said Grande. “Receiving the ‘Rising Star’ award is truly amazing and I’m extremely grateful!”
In the past year, the 21-year-old singer has risen as a powerful pop force on Billboard’s charts. She landed her second Billboard 200 No. 1 album with My Everything in September — following last year’s debut Yours Truly — and has scored three top five hits on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Problem,” “Break Free” and “Bang Bang” with Jessie J and Minaj.
“In a watershed year for female recording talent, Ariana Grande has managed to make an indelible mark as a young artist,” said Janice Min, co-president and chief creative officer of Guggenheim Media’s Entertainment Group, which consists of Billboard and The Hollywood Reporter. “We’re so pleased to award Ariana our Rising Star accolade for 2014, and anxiously await what comes next.”
Tony Award-winning icon Menzel voiced Elsa in Disney’s massive global hit Frozen, in which she sings the film’s Oscar-winning song “Let It Go” that’s become a new classic in the Disney cartoon canon. With this song, she made history this year as the first singer with both a Billboard Top 10 hit and a Tony Award for acting.
“I’m so honored to receive the Breakthrough Artist Award from Billboard,” said Menzel. “This has definitely been an amazing breakthrough year and I’m thrilled and humbled by it all, including this wonderful award.”
Menzel is currently starring in the Broadway production If/Then and her Christmas album Holiday Wishes debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Holiday Albums chart, at its release last month.
“For Idina Menzel, who has influenced the charts for decades, 2014 was an utterly remarkable year by any measure,” said Min. “We are so proud to be able to give the Breakthrough Artist of the Year award to someone who so richly deserves it, and continues to both surprise and profoundly shape the industry.”
Recipients of the Billboard Icon awards and Country Artist of the Year will be announced in coming weeks.
This story first appeared on Billboard.com.
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Women in Entertainment
Women in Entertainment 2022