Millions of people have seen Celine Dion in concert, but only a select few know what happens behind the scenes...until now. For one year, cameras followed Celine's every move and captured every moment of her Taking Chances world tour, which spanned five continents, 25 countries and 93 cities.
At first, Celine says the footage was just for her family—a souvenir of their adventures in cities like Dublin, Tokyo, Cape Town and Shanghai. "My mom was on tour with us, and I wanted to have this forever," Celine says. Then, after seeing what the cameras captured, Celine and her husband, René [Angélil], decided to turn it into a documentary film, Celine: Through the Eyes of the World.
"It was so wonderful," she says. "René looked at this and said, 'We're not keeping this for ourselves.'"
Now, fans can see what the number one–selling artist of the decade is like from the moment she wakes up with her husband and son, René-Charles (R.C.), to the time she steps onstage.
This concert film showcases more than Celine's music. For the first time, fans also get an inside look at the family's personal moments and their global journey, which included an emotional day at a German concentration camp and Celine's first trip to South Africa.
While in Cape Town, Celine visited the jail cell that once housed Nelson Mandela and met the former president in person. "That was one of the greatest moments, first of all, to meet with him. To have my son sit on his lap, have my mom by his side, to share a few words with him," she says. "It was just a very emotional moment."
Celine says she and her family took their time in each country, which is why the tour lasted more than a year.
"We wanted to make it ... a family adventure," she says. "To learn and see the beauty of the world."
Celine's son, R.C., saw the world alongside his mother, but after they returned home, he enrolled in his first school. Before that, Celine says her 9-year-old was home-schooled.
"This love of our life finally has his own life," she says. "He's got his own school, his own friends, his own teacher. We wake up in the morning. We drive him to school every day. He's so proud to wear his uniform."
Now, instead of touring the world, Celine spends her days shuttling her son to and from school, helping with homework and volunteering in his classroom. Some may call it a vacation, but Celine says she's never been so busy in her life.
Occasionally, this international superstar even serves as "pizza mom" at her son's school. "I love it. I mean, it sounds kind of simple. You give pizza to all the children, but I get to be in the classroom. I get to know the environment of my child," she says. "We call it a normal life, for most of people, but for me, it is extraordinary."
After returning from tour, Celine, René and R.C. also decided to bring a pet into their home—a Labrador puppy named Charlie. At first, Celine says her husband was hesitant about having a dog.
"[He said], 'A puppy, they lick and they jump on people, and they smell,'" Celine says. "I said: 'What are you talking about? Let's give it a try.' And now he's the one who loves the puppy the most."
Celine says René even keeps dog treats in his pockets. "He said to me, 'I so regret the fact that I did not have a puppy when I was a little boy,'" she says.
Celine has many blessings to be thankful for, but in 2009, she also experienced great sadness when she suffered a miscarriage. In the past, Celine has spoken openly about her struggle with infertility and experience with in vitro fertilization.
Despite her loss, Celine isn't giving up hope. "It's life, you know? A lot of people go through this," she says. "We tried four times to have a child. We're still trying. We're on the fifth try, and I'll tell you, if five is my lucky number, this fifth try has got to come in."
Celine says she and René try not to let fertility issues affect their relationship."I don't think a child [or] a pregnancy should make anything stronger or weaker. A child is not there to fix a marriage, to bring happiness," she says. "Let's not put pressure on children."
When faced with a difficult situation, Celine says her friends, family members and fans are a comfort to her. "I think I have an amazing relationship with my family, with my friends, and I have to say, with my fans," she says. "I have an amazing and special bond with people. They care. They mind. They feel for me, and I just want you to know that I appreciate that tremendously. I will be the happiest one to tell you when I'm pregnant, and if not, I'm the luckiest artist, wife and mother of a wonderful son."
While on the road, Celine filled stadiums in every corner of the world—from Dubai to Dublin. The overwhelming response proves that her music resonates with people of all races and religions.
"I don't know if everybody realizes how powerful music can be. I think it breaks every barrier," she says. "I think God has given me something to work with, a voice, and I'm just trying to serve the lyrics and the music to get messages through."
In Canada, Celine's message is heard loud and clear. This Quebec native has been performing close to home for decades, and she's inspired a new generation of singers. Four of these artists joined together to form one of the country's top-selling groups, The Canadian Tenors.
These talented singers—Victor Micallef, Clifton Murray, Remigio Pereira and Fraser Walters—are hoping to win over the American audience, which is why they traveled to Chicago for their Oprah Show debut.
Little do they know, Celine is waiting in the wings to surprise them!
While The Canadian Tenors perform their biggest hit, Hallelujah, the stage opens to reveal Celine, who joins in during the chorus. The men keep singing, despite the shock!
"[It was] unbelievable," Fraser says. "We've watched you for years running up the charts and been an inspiration to the world and an inspiration to us."
Remigio says he's been watching Celine sing since he was a child, and to him, her music is pure emotion. "The greatest artists, like Maria Callas, they all have this special quality that they're able to touch people's hearts," he says. "For me, that's what you do with everybody. ... For me, it's an inspiration."
Celine hopes to continue inspiring fans with her next venture—a new Las Vegas show!
"It's not a rumor. I'm going back to Las Vegas," she says. "[It's] a brand new show, 31 musicians, a big orchestra. Obviously, I'm going to be doing my hits, but also a tribute to movies, Hollywood movies with amazing visuals."
Though she can't give away many details, Celine says the show will open in March 2011. Mark your calendars!