Olivia Newton-John Passes Away at 73


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Olivia Newton-John at a red carpet before she passed away.

Isabella Guzman, News Editor

On August 8th, 2022 many around the world were saddened to hear that the well-known singer/actress, Olivia Newton-John had passed away.
Mostly known for her role as Sandy Olsson in the 1978Rom-Com/Musical, Grease, Newton-John was beloved by the performing arts community. Her influence was prominent in the late 70s when Grease came out alongside Xanadu and Glee for 7 years.
In Grease the tune “Hopelessly Devoted to You,” a viral song among fans, was almost not even used in the movie! According to American Songwriter, “Hopelessly Devoted to You” wasn’t originally going to be included in Grease. In fact, the song was recorded and filmed after the movie was made. According to multiple sources, Newton-John’s contract had stipulated that the singer was to receive one solo performance in the film, and without it, the producers had to make a “last-minute addition,” since the song was never in the musical. (https://americansongwriter.com/meaning-story-hopelessly-devoted-to-you-olivia-newton-john-song-lyrics/)The song was originally not meant to be included in the movie, as it was not even included in the musical. However, Olivia Newton-John was required to have a solo-song performance since she is the main character in the film. To their luck, the song was a huge hit for Grease fans, along with tunes such as “You’re the One That I Want” and Grease Lightnin’.”
Olivia Newton-John has impacted students and staff here at North as well, her wholesome and beautiful way of acting inspires them every day.
Chorus director, Mrs. Hilland states, “A lot of actors and singers here at North love Grease. There are two songs Olivia Newton-John is so well known for, but one of them is ‘Hopelessly Devoted to You.’ Everybody loves that song. Everyone wants to sing that song. I absolutely love her voice. It had such a crystal clear quality to it.”
Hilland’s explanation of Newton-John’s impact shows how Olivia Newton-John has impacted many lives since starring in Grease, including those at North, even staff!
Olivia Newton-John’s Co-Star, John Travolta, who plays Danny Zuko wrote a heartfelt Instagram post to his co-star he held very dear to his heart, reading “My dearest Olivia, you made all of our lives so much better. Your impact was incredible. I love you so much. We will see you down the road and we will all be together again. Yours from the moment I saw you and forever!
Your Danny, your John!” The two stars were very close friends during and after the production of the film, still being friends for 30 years following the film’s release.
“It’s sad when someone you grew up admiring passes away, right? I got to play Sandy in Grease, and that was the most exciting thing: watching and learning from her. She is someone I aspired to emulate. That role will always be special to me.” says Theater Director, Mrs. Hightower.
Olivia Newton-John, being so iconic and influential, her death is something that impacts so many since her movies and songs are so well-known by the general public. As an icon, she will always be remembered.