Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta (born March 28, 1986), better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American pop singer-songwriter. After enrolling at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts in 2003 and later performing in the rock music scene of New York City's Lower East Side, she signed with Streamline Records, an imprint of Interscope Records. During her early time at Interscope, she worked as a songwriter for fellow label artists and captured the attention of recording artist Akon who, recognizing her vocal abilities, signed her to his own label, Kon Live Distribution.
Gaga came to prominence following the release of her debut studio album The Fame (2008), which was a critical and commercial success and achieved international popularity with the singles "Just Dance" and "Poker Face". The album reached number one on the record charts of six countries, topped the Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums chart while simultaneously peaking at number two on the Billboard 200 chart in the United States and accomplished positions within the top ten worldwide.