Michelle Williams
American singer
Michelle Williams
Tenitra Michelle Williams, commonly known as Michelle Williams, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer and actress. Williams rose to fame in the 2000s as a member of R&B girl group Destiny's Child, one of the best-selling female groups of all time. During the hiatus of Destiny's Child, Williams released her debut solo album Heart to Yours which topped the US gospel album chart and became the best-selling gospel album of 2002.
Biography
Michelle Williams's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Michelle Williams from around the web
Oscars red carpet: Stylists to Viola Davis, Natalie Portman, Michelle Williams share secrets
ABC News - about 15 hours
The stylists dish on how they dressed this year's nominees.
Article Link:
ABC News article
Stars sparkle in metallics and sequins on BAFTA red carpet
Reuters.com - 10 days
Nicole Kidman, Emma Stone, Michelle Williams and Penelope Cruz add sparkle to the BAFTA red carpet with metallic dresses. Rough cut (no reporter narration)
Article Link:
Reuters.com article
Pregnant Natalie Portman Just Wore Topshop To An Oscars Lunch
Huffington Post - 16 days
Thanks to Natalie Portman’s widely acclaimed portrayal of Jackie Kennedy in “Jackie,” we’ve been blessed with numerous red carpet sightings over the course of her second pregnancy. Portman previously seemed to take inspiration from Kennedy, giving us chic ‘60s vibes in long-sleeve gowns with big, bold details. But for an Oscars luncheon in Beverly Hills on Monday, the 35-year-old went casual chic in flats and a belted black Topshop dress that was on sale for $30 before it sold out.  She looked absolutely radiant (and comfortable!) for the star-studded affair, which also reunited the impeccably dressed cast of “The Help.” Behold Octavia Spencer... Viola Davis in Bottega Veneta... ... and Emma Stone in Stella McCartney: In fact, there was a bevy of well-dressed celebs. Check out more of our favorite looks from the event below.  Michelle Williams in Louis Vuitton:  Naomie Harris in Bottega Veneta: Ruth Negga in Miu Miu: Laura Dern in Roksanda: ...
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Huffington Post article
Viola Davis Wins SAG Award, Thanks 'Fences' Author For Elevating Black Narrative
Huffington Post - 24 days
Viola Davis took home the Screen Actors Guild Award on Sunday for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role for her stunning work in “Fences,” but not before she delivered a few powerful words onstage.  Davis, whose portrayal of Rose Maxson in the film has earned her an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe Award, made sure to take a moment to thank August Wilson, the black playwright who wrote “Fences.” In doing so, she praised him for placing a man of color at the center of the narrative, making sure his story was told.  Viola Davis thanks August Wilson: “he honored the average man, who happened to be a man of color” #SAGawards pic.twitter.com/tjcVsPtGTd — Hollywood Reporter (@THR) January 30, 2017 “What August did so beautifully is he honored the average man who happened to be a man of color,” Davis said. “Sometimes we don’t have to shake the world and move the world and create anything that is going to be in the history book. The fact t ...
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Huffington Post article
Red Carpet Watch: Michelle Williams Keeps It Sweet, Not Saccharine
NYTimes - 27 days
The actress, who wears Louis Vuitton exclusively on the red carpet, always aims for “cool and fashionable.”
Article Link:
NYTimes article
Black Women Dominate Oscar's Best Supporting Actress Category
Huffington Post - 30 days
function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); The 2017 Oscar nominations were announced Tuesday morning and, this year, at least, it features more nominees of color. One group of nominees in particular stands out: Black actresses who dominate this year’s Best Supporting Actress category, earning three of the five slots featured. They include Viola Davis for “Fences,” Naomie Harris for “Moonlight” and Octavia Spencer for “Hidden Figures.” Davis, who made history on Tuesday by becoming the first bl ...
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Huffington Post article
Through It All, Michelle Williams Is Having a Blast
Wall Street Journal - about 1 month
Over the course of her 20-year career, Michelle Williams has never shied away from a challenging film role. When it comes to her life off-screen, she’s equally courageous.
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Wall Street Journal article
A-Sides with Jon Chattman: It's a Bird, It's a Plane, It's Another Guy Making Oscar Predictions
Huffington Post - about 1 month
A week from today the nominations for the 89th Academy Awards will be announced, and I'd expect a few jaw-dropping omissions (Ryan Gosling?) and additions (Michael Keaton?) like every year. That said, I think we'll see less surprises this year than in years past (ie. La La will sing and dance to the tune of a lot of nods. I'll also say #oscarssowhite isn't going to happen this year. There's just too many amazing performances and films to pass over this year plus Cheryl Boone Isaacs totally revamped the Academy's voting process. Anyway, here I am writing down my Oscar predictions like everybody else in the world. Read on, and predict your own. Guess right on all, and win a pony! Best Picture I'm going to say the Academy uses eight slots this year, but will add the last two here in case they go all the way or to nine. Arrival Hell or High Water Hidden Figures La La Land Lion Loving Manchester by the Sea Moonlight Hacksaw Ridge Fences Potential Surprises Sil ...
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Huffington Post article
'La La Land,' 'Arrival' And 'Nocturnal Animals' Lead Britain's BAFTA Award Nominations
Huffington Post - about 1 month
Fresh from its success at Hollywood’s Golden Globes, romance musical “La La Land” leads the field for next month’s British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) awards after securing 11 nominations on Tuesday. Sci-fi film “Arrival” and fashion designer Tom Ford’s drama “Nocturnal Animals” each received nine nominations, while “Manchester by the Sea”, about a family dealing with tragedy, got six. “La La Land” stars Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone were nominated in the Leading Actor and Leading Actress categories. The movie about a pianist and struggling actress in Hollywood is also in the running for Best Film, Original Music, Editing, Cinematography, Sound, Production Design and Costume Design. Damien Chazelle was nominated in the Director and Original Screenplay categories. On Sunday night, the musical won seven Golden Globes. “Arrival” will compete for Best Film, Adapted Screenplay, Original Music, Editing, Cinematography, Special Visual Effects and Sound. Amy Adams i ...
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Huffington Post article
Everything You Need To Know Before Sunday's Golden Globes, Including Who Will Win
Huffington Post - about 2 months
function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); It’s Golden Globe weekend! Here’s everything you need to know. How do I watch? Catch the Golden Globes live at 8 p.m. EST on NBC Sunday. E!’s red-carpet special, hosted by Giuliana Rancic and Ryan Seacrest, begins at 6 p.m. NBC’s airs at 7 p.m. The awards take place at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles. Who is hosting? Jimmy Fallon, who has teased potential Donald Trump cracks despite rustling the president-elect’s hair like an old chum during Trump’s ...
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Huffington Post article
New York Film Critics Circle Spreads the Love
Huffington Post - about 2 months
Why is this night different from all other [awards] nights? New York Magazine film critic and emcee for this annual awards fete David Edelstein had some answers about honoring the storytelling but Mark Ruffalo, on hand to present the Best Screenplay award to Kenneth Lonergan for "Manchester By the Sea," put it succinctly: the speeches are fresh. This being the beginning of the long slog to Oscars, everyone can let loose. And "Manchester"'s lead, Casey Affleck did, reading one-liners from negative reviews, especially from the night's emcee. Edelstein, for his part, was ruffled and began to praise Affleck for just about everything, until that wore thin. But it was all in good fun. Had the awards been televised as the Globes and Oscars are, this would have been a different night indeed. Isabelle Huppert, on a roll starting with last month's Gothams, won Best Actress for her work in both "Elle" and "Things to Come," was gratified that the first such honor was bestowed upon Greta Garbo in ...
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Huffington Post article
Grief is at the center of the season's strongest dramas, including 'Arrival' and 'Manchester by the Sea'
LATimes - about 2 months
In “Manchester by the Sea,” a film that is largely about grief and the gradual recovery from it, Michelle Williams’ character Randi Chandler explains how she feels after the tragic death of her children. A few years after watching them burn in a house fire set accidentally by her husband, Randi...
Article Link:
LATimes article
The Best Films 2016
Huffington Post - 2 months
As we go forward, movies guide us. They give us directions. They motivate us. They provide rest stops, comic relief and flashbacks to the past. And they reassure us that we will thrive. It's a perfect time to reflect on the most inspiring films, performances and artistic achievements of this last year. Check out the best in film in 2016. (Photos courtesy of Fox Searchlight, Disney Studios, 20th Century Fox, A24, Amazon Studios, Roadside Attractions) Best Films Arrival -- (***1/2) Director Denis Villeneuve (Sicario, Prisoners), creates a compelling sci-fi movie, based on Eric Heisserer's thoughtful, feminist screenplay. Aliens arrive in massive floating pods in 12 locations around the world. A linguist (Amy Adams) tries to communicate with them and save humanity. Jeremy Renner and Forrest Whitaker co-star in a film filled with suspense, dread and brain-numbing science. The Birth of a Nation -- (****) An uncompromising retelling of the country's most heralded sl ...
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Huffington Post article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Michelle Williams
    THIRTIES
  • 2015
    Age 34
    On September 30, 2015, Williams premiered her Believe at Home bedding collection on EVINE; she believes her journal entry is proof of what she dreamed years earlier.
    More Details Hide Details Williams is to star in the title role of The Muny’s summer production of Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida, presented at the St. Louis venue August 8–14. She played the role previously during the original Broadway run.
    On April 14, 2015, Williams sang for US President Barack Obama & First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House.
    More Details Hide Details The program titled, The Gospel Tradition: In Performance at the White House was broadcast Friday, June 26, 2015, on PBS stations and simulcast on TV One.
    In 2015, Williams sang for U.S. President Barack Obama & First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House.
    More Details Hide Details Williams has found success as a television, Broadway and West End theatre actress, gaining a nomination for "Best Lead Female – Equity" in 2008 at the 18th Annual NAACP Theatre Awards. Making her acting debut on Broadway in Aida (2003), she has since starred in the sitcom series Half & Half (2006) and the musical productions; The Color Purple (2007), Chicago (2009–10), What My Husband Doesn't Know (2011) and Fela! (2013). Furthermore, she was a featured judge on MTV's Top Pop Group, a contestant in series 8 of Strictly Come Dancing and co-stars alongside Deitrick Haddon in the Oxygen reality television series Fix My Choir. She has earned several awards and accolades including but not limited to, a Grammy Award and star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame with Destiny's Child; a solo MOBO Award and Stellar Award.
  • 2014
    Age 33
    In September 2014, Journey to Freedom became Williams' best-charting album on the US Billboard 200, debuting at number twenty-nine and was her first appearance on the US Independent Albums chart, where it debuted at number seven.
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    She reunited with Destiny's Child bandmates Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland for the third single "Say Yes", which was released a year later and became Williams' first number-one on the US Hot Gospel Songs, Gospel Digital Songs and Gospel Streaming charts; additionally charting internationally in the UK, France and Belgium. "Say Yes" spent seven weeks at number one on the Hot Gospel Songs chart and received a nomination for Best Gospel/Inspirational Song at the 2014 Soul Train Music Awards.
    More Details Hide Details
    In June 2014, Williams released the lead single from Journey to Freedom, titled "If We Had Your Eyes".
    More Details Hide Details The single became her first release to appear on the US Billboard Adult R&B Songs and Hot Gospel Songs charts, peaking at nineteen and twenty-two respectively. The single signalled her return to inspirational music and also peaked at number five on the US Hot Singles Sales chart.
    In 2014, Williams became the spokesperson for a Playtex campaign titled Play On Playbook.
    More Details Hide Details In April, it was announced that Williams would join the 50-city North American arena tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber's rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar as Mary Magdalene alongside Superstar winner Ben Forster and other recording artists such as Incubus' Brandon Boyd, 'N Sync's JC Chasez, and Public Image Ltd's John Lydon. In May 2014, the 54-city US tour of Jesus Christ Superstar was cancelled before its launch in New Orleans due to poor ticket sales. Furthermore, it was announced that Williams would star as a mentor in an Oxygen reality television competition titled Fix My Choir, alongside fellow contemporary gospel recording artists Deitrick Haddon and Tye Tribbett.
  • 2013
    Age 32
    In December 2013, Beyoncé released her self-titled fifth studio album in which Williams appeared alongside Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland on the song and music video "Superpower".
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    On January 3, 2013, it was announced that Williams would play Sandra in the national tour of the Tony-nominated musical Fela!, beginning January 29 in Washington, D.C. and playing in a total of 16 cities.
    More Details Hide Details Destiny's Child released a compilation album titled Love Songs on January 29, which features the newly recorded song "Nuclear", co-written by Williams. On February 3, 2013, during Beyoncé's performance at the Super Bowl XLVII halftime show, held at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Rowland and Williams joined Knowles on the stage, where the trio performed excerpts from "Bootylicious", "Independent Women", and "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)". Rowland and Williams then exited the stage and Knowles ended her performance. On February 21, it was announced that Williams will be starring in her own reality television show, titled My Sister's Keeper produced by E1 Television, to coincide with the release of her fourth studio album. On June 29, Williams revealed in an interview for Michigan Avenue magazine that her fourth album was to be titled Journey to Freedom.
  • 2012
    Age 31
    On June 7, 2012, it was announced that Williams had been signed to Light Records and is due to release her fourth studio album in 2013.
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  • 2011
    Age 30
    In August, Electronic Giant Beatz released a press release, cover art and a music video teaser for a song featuring Williams titled "On the Run". "On the Run" was released in the UK on November 27, 2011.
    More Details Hide Details Furthermore, in December, Ultra Naté released a joint collaboration with Williams titled "Waiting on You" which has thus far risen to number eleven on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs chart.
    In August 2011, during an interview for The BoomBox she discussed collaborating with hip-hop artist Talib Kweli on a song produced by Hi-Tek on which she sings a verse and the hook.
    More Details Hide Details Furthermore, she revealed the sound of her upcoming album would include more "live instrumentation", inspired by the gospel music she "grew up" on.
    On July 6, 2011, Williams released a buzz single titled "Love Gun" produced by Druski, to precede the release of her upcoming fourth solo album.
    More Details Hide Details Describing the sound of the album, Williams stated "My album will be 'inspirational pop". Think of Katy Perry's "Firework" or Natasha Bedingfield's "Unwritten". I want to give people a message of hope while at the same time get them moving with dance inspired tracks." The album is "slated to drop this winter with an official single release in August/September".
    On February 4, 2011, Williams began a 28-city tour starring in the David E. Talbert stage-play What My Husband Doesn't Know along with Brian J. White, Ann Nesby and Clifton Davis, playing the lead role of Lena Summer.
    More Details Hide Details Summer is described as "the envy of all her friends. Big house. Successful husband. It's the perfect life... or so it seems. But with her husband's demanding career, the other side of her bed is too cold too often. When a handsome young foreman is hired to work on their home, the spark she's been missing quickly rages into a wildfire that could cost her everything." In June, Williams posted a series of tweets and pictures documenting her time in Munich, Germany; including a visit to the BMW Museum. On June 5, she announced from Munich, Germany, that the following day she would be going to Ibiza, Spain. She further detailed her plans on June 6, announcing that she'd met with a "video director" for a 2-day shoot in Ibiza for a song titled "On the Run".
    In January 2011, Williams appeared on BBC's popular comedy panel game show Never Mind the Buzzcocks.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 2010
    Age 29
    In December 2010, Williams released a song entitled "Stay for a Minute" for free digital download via Twitter to celebrate gaining over 100,000 followers. "Stay for a Minute", written by Keli Nicole and produced by Jazz Nixon in 2006, was due for inclusion on the original version of Williams' Unexpected, which she described as a "solid R&B album", however when "the sound changed", the song was shelved and left unreleased.
    More Details Hide Details Furthermore, a track produced by Stargate titled "If You Wanna Go", leaked to the internet, believed to be an outtake from the Unexpected sessions as Williams dismissed the song as "old" during a Twitter post.
    In 2010, she started work on her fourth studio album.
    More Details Hide Details Michelle stated on Twitter that her new album will have a similar sound to Unexpected and might contain a dance track she has recorded with Ultra Naté entitled "I'm Waiting on You". The upcoming album has been stated to feature production from Timbaland.
    In December 2010, Williams joined DJ Martin Jay to become a co-host on Choice FM's Breakfast Show in London for the month, replacing Lucy Ambache who was on maternity leave.
    More Details Hide Details Williams has stated on her Twitter account multiple times that she will release a new album in 2011.
    In August 2010, it was reported that Williams would be participating on season 8 of the British TV dance competition show Strictly Come Dancing, the original version of Dancing With The Stars.
    More Details Hide Details On the launch show for the series it was revealed that Williams had been paired with Brendan Cole, who 'immediately described the pairing as "perfection"'. They remained in the competition for seven weeks with variable results; on October 23, Ian Waite stood in as her professional partner when Brendan Cole was unable to do so. Williams was eliminated on November 14. Strictly Come Dancing performances
    Originally slated to play her final performance on Sunday, March 28, 2010, Williams played an additional 18 performances through Tuesday, April 13, prior to joining the Los Angeles engagement of the Chicago national tour, Tuesday, April 20 through Sunday, May 9 at the Pantages Theatre.
    More Details Hide Details In commenting on Williams' engagements Barry Weissler said, "Michelle has proven to be a tremendous asset to CHICAGO, first in London last year and now on Broadway. In addition to being a fantastic performer, she's as delightful and genuine offstage as she is onstage. We're thrilled that she's not only able to extend her Broadway run, but to join our national tour for its third return engagement in Los Angeles."
    On February 8, 2010, Williams made a return to Broadway by commencing a seven-week limited engagement in Chicago at the Ambassador Theatre, replacing Ashlee Simpson.
    More Details Hide Details In April, producers Barry and Fran Weissler announced that Williams would extend her limited engagement in Chicago.
  • 2009
    Age 28
    Her run was extended and Williams continued appearing for three additional weeks for an extended engagement starting August 23 through September 12, 2009.
    More Details Hide Details On January 12, 2010, it was announced that Michelle had parted ways with Mathew Knowles (her manager) and Music World Entertainment.
    In July 2009, Williams elaborated further on the re-release in an interview for Digital Spy, confirming that Sony Music (London division) was considering a re-issue of the album for which some new songs could be recorded.
    More Details Hide Details Furthermore, she revealed that the Unexpected remix album was "completely done" and puts a hip-hop and/or jazz spin on some the album's original tracks. She also said that some of the new remixes could also be released as part of the UK re-issue. However, by November 1, 2009 no more confirmation had been made on any Unexpected re-releases, suggesting that all plans had been scrapped. As of April 2013 the album has sold 34,000 copies in the United States. On July 13, Williams began a limited six-week engagement at the Cambridge Theatre in Chicago, making her the first African-American to be cast in the West End production of the musical. On discussing Williams' acquiring of the coveted role of murderous chorus girl Roxie Hart, manager and Music World Entertainment executive Matthew Knowles said, "She's one of the greatest characters in the history of musical theater and it's both a challenge and a lot of fun to bring her to life on-stage. I hope that everyone who comes to the show enjoys it as much as I do, Michelle is a prime example of an all-round entertainer, she has enjoyed many successes as a music artist and now theater goers are going to experience her far reaching talents once again" whilst Williams is quoted as saying, "It's a real thrill to be given the opportunity to play Roxie Hart in the West End's spectacular production of 'Chicago'."
    In 2009, Williams confirmed in a video blog that she and a production team were putting the finishing touches on a remix version of the album due for release in North America and Asia.
    More Details Hide Details Williams also later confirmed via her Twitter account that Unexpected would soon receive a full UK re-release with "Hello Heartbreak" serving as its lead single.
  • 2008
    Age 27
    Speaking of her move from gospel music to secular pop/R&B with Unexpected in August 2008, Williams told noted UK R&B writer Pete Lewis of the award-winning Blues & Soul: "For me to sell the number of units that I did, and to get the amount of love and reception that I got, from doing gospel was great.
    More Details Hide Details It's just that, right now I'm ready to try something different and to get my name and face out there in a different way."
    Gaining favorable reviews from critics, in October 2008 Unexpected debuted on the US Billboard 200 albums chart at number 42 and number 11 on the US Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, with first week sales of 14,000 units.
    More Details Hide Details
    In June 2008, Williams released lead single "We Break the Dawn" to universal acclaim from critics who hailed it as "a terrific fusion of European disco and American R&B".
    More Details Hide Details The song became Williams' most successful single, peaking at number four on the US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart, whilst also charting internationally at number forty-seven on the UK Singles Chart and number thirty-eight on the Hungarian Singles Chart before eventually being listed on Hungary's year-end singles chart. During the week of July 11, 2008, "We Break the Dawn" hit number one on the US Billboard Hot Dance Airplay chart. After the album's release date was delayed from September 12, 2008 to October 7, 2008, "The Greatest" replaced "Stop This Car" as the anticipated second single release, and was serviced to mainstream radio. Meanwhile, "Hello Heartbreak" was catered to dance clubs. "The Greatest" – described as a "fantastic pop ballad" – became Williams' second hit on the Billboard dance charts when it peaked at number-one the US Hot Dance Club Songs chart, thanks to its numerous remixes, before being listed at number thirty-nine on the chart's decade-end list – ironically, just behind "Lose My Breath" which Williams recorded while a member of Destiny's Child 5 years prior.
    In March 2008, Columbia Records and Music World Entertainment revealed that Williams would be releasing her third studio album Unexpected on October 7, 2008, in the U.S. The album, her first secular release and first release since the disbanding of Destiny's Child, involves production by Stargate, Rico Love, the Heavyweights, Wayne Wilkins, Andrew Frampton and Soulshock and Karlin, among others.
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  • 2007
    Age 26
    Beginning in April 2007, Williams joined Oprah Winfrey's Chicago-based cast of the hit Broadway musical The Color Purple for its national tour, starting with an extended run at the Cadillac Palace Theatre.
    More Details Hide Details Williams described the opportunity as "a dream come true", playing the part of blues singer Shug Avery, which earned her positive reception.
  • 2006
    Age 25
    In April 2006, Williams performed "America the Beautiful" at World Wrestling Entertainment's event WrestleMania 22, which was in her hometown of Chicago.
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    Following Destiny's Child's disbandment in early 2006 Williams made her television debut in the UPN comedy Half & Half, where she played the role of Naomi, a record company executive who is HIV positive.
    More Details Hide Details Later that year, she appeared as one of the celebrity singers on the FOX reality television show Celebrity Duets, duetting with actors Alfonso Ribeiro and Jai Rodriguez.
  • 2004
    Age 23
    The album also became her second to debut at number two on the US Top Gospel Albums chart — the first being 2004's Do You Know — and was also a top 10 success on the UK Christian & Gospel Albums chart where it debuted at number 6.
    More Details Hide Details Journey to Freedom was nominated for Outstanding Gospel Album (Traditional or Contemporary) at the 46th NAACP Image Awards. Third single "Say Yes" won Music Video of the Year at the 30th Stellar Awards, where Williams received a total of four nominations and reunited with bandmates Beyonce & Kelly Rowland for a live performance of the song.
  • 2003
    Age 22
    Following the release and promotion of Heart to Yours, Williams made her on-stage acting debut in 2003, replacing fellow R&B singer Toni Braxton in the title role of Aida, the hit Broadway musical with music by Elton John and lyrics by Tim Rice.
    More Details Hide Details She was the first and remains the only Destiny's Child member to have acted on Broadway. During the release of her fellow Destiny's Child members' debut albums, Williams spent time in the studio, recording her second album. The album saw her generally re-teaming with the majority of the producers and songwriters from her previous effort, also including Solange Knowles, Dawkins & Dawkins, and brother Erron Williams. However, released on January 26, 2004 in the United States, Do You Know reached a disappointing number one-hundred-and-twenty on the Billboard 200 chart, selling 10,000 copies in its first week despite warm reception from critics who lent praise to Williams' songwriting ability. Once again, Williams scored more success on the component charts, where the album debuted at number two on the Top Gospel Albums chart and number three on the top Christian Albums tally. The album was later re-released, including previously unreleased songs, to find greater success but did not re-chart; its same-titled lead single also failed to chart. As of March 2008, Do You Know has sold 78,000 copies in the US as of 2008.
  • 2002
    Age 21
    Billboard ranked Williams as the fifth Top Gospel Artist of 2002 due to the success of her debut release Heart to Yours which was one of the best-selling gospel releases of the year.
    More Details Hide Details In 2013, Williams was honored in her hometown of Rockford, Illinois at the 2013 I Love Gospel Music honors luncheon, which featured musical tributes, including one by Sunday Best winner Amber Bullock. In 2001, Williams made a "bountiful" donation of $148,900 to her church, St. Paul Church of God in Christ in Rockford, Illinois – of which she has been a member since birth – to finish construction of the church's school, St. Paul Academy. The church is pastored by her uncle, Bishop James E. Washington. In 2005, music producer David Foster, his daughter Amy Foster-Gillies, and Knowles wrote "Stand Up for Love", which would serve as the anthem of World Children's Day, an event which takes place annually around the world on November 20 to raise awareness and funds for children's causes worldwide. Destiny's Child lent their voices and support as global ambassadors for the 2005 World Children's Day program. In this role, Knowles, Rowland and Williams visited Ronald McDonald Houses around the world during their Destiny Fulfilled... and Lovin' It World Tour and donated a portion of their North American ticket sales to Ronald McDonald House Charities.
    Billboard listed Williams as the fifth Top Gospel Artist of 2002.
    More Details Hide Details
    Released on April 16, 2002, in North America to much critical acclaim, Williams became the first member of Destiny's Child to release solo material with Heart to Yours.
    More Details Hide Details The album sold 20,000 copies in its first week, placing it at number fifty-seven on the Billboard 200 and number two on the Billboard Gospel Albums chart, where it later rose to number one. It became the year's best-selling gospel album, selling more than 200,000 units stateside. A music video for the album's first and only single, "Heard a Word," was produced by film director Sylvain White. Heart to Yours won Williams a MOBO Award for "Best Gospel Act" along with a raft of nominations including a Stellar Award nomination for "New Artist of the Year", a GMWA Excellence Award nomination for "Female Vocalist of the Year Urban Contemporary" and a nomination for "Traditional Gospel Recorded Song of the Year" from GMA Dove Awards for her collaboration with Shirley Caesar on "Steal Away To Jesus" which was first featured on Caesar's Hymns album.
    Also in 2002, Billboard, named her the fifth Top Gospel Artist of the year and she received a MOBO Award for "Best Gospel Act". and garnered her three Grammy nominations for her work on the album including for Best Gospel Album.
    More Details Hide Details Following this she released Do You Know (2004) which gained her a nomination for "Best Gospel Act" at the 2004 MOBO Awards. After Destiny's Child's disbanded in 2005, Williams released her first pop album, Unexpected (2008), which spawned the internationally charting single "We Break the Dawn" and the US Dance number-one "The Greatest". Her fourth studio album, Journey to Freedom (2014), received positive reviews and became her highest-charting charting album in the US; preceded by lead single "If We Had Your Eyes" which reached the US Adult R&B top 20 and the Soul Train-nominated "Say Yes", which charted internationally and topped the US Hot Gospel Songs chart for seven weeks. Journey to Freedom was nominated for Outstanding Gospel Album (Traditional or Contemporary) at the 46th NAACP Image Awards and earned Williams four nominations at the 30th annual Stellar Awards, winning Music Video of the Year for "Say Yes".
  • TEENAGE
  • 2000
    Age 19
    After the much-publicized turmoil, Williams, alongside backup dancer Farrah Franklin—officially joined the group in early 2000, replacing LeToya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson without notice.
    More Details Hide Details Buoyed by the group's breakout success, Luckett and Roberson had both attempted to split with the group's manager in late 1990s, claiming that he kept a disproportionate share of the band's profits and unfairly favored Knowles and Rowland. The issue was heightened after Williams and Franklin appeared in the video of "Say My Name", implying that the original band members were already replaced. Franklin, however, faded from the group after five months, as evidenced by her absences during promotional appearances and concerts. Franklin attributed her departure to negative vibes in the group resulting from the strife. After settling on this final lineup, the trio recorded "Independent Women Part I", which appeared on the soundtrack to the 2000 film Charlie's Angels. It became their best-charting single yet, topping the official US singles chart for eleven consecutive weeks; the success cemented the new lineup and skyrocketed them to fame.
  • 1999
    Age 18
    In late 1999, Williams met Destiny's Child band members Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland in the lobby of an Atlanta hotel.
    More Details Hide Details Months later Beyoncé asked an acquaintance if she knew anyone who could sing for the possible spot with the group and was referred to Michelle.
  • 1997
    Age 16
    Williams graduated from Rockford Auburn High School in 1997.
    More Details Hide Details Shortly after graduating, she pursued a degree in criminal justice at Illinois State University, doubtful of her ability to make a career as a professional singer. However, after two years of university, she left to pursue a music career, as a backing vocalist for other artists such as Monica.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1980
    Born
    Williams was born in Rockford, Illinois in 1980.
    More Details Hide Details Her mother was a nurse and her father was a car salesman; she became one of four children raised in a "stable, loving" household. She made her musical debut at the age of seven, performing a rendition of the hymn "Blessed Assurance" at the St. Paul Church of God in Christ. She later sang in the gospel groups United Harmony and Chosen Expression.
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