On Air Now
Smooth Breakfast with Jenni Falconer 6am - 10am
7 October 2018, 15:32 | Updated: 17 October 2018, 17:48
Paula Abdul was one of the most popular dancers and singers of the late 1980s.
In the 2000s, she found new fame as part of the American Idol judging panel alongside Simon Cowell, and she remains a close pal of the X Factor boss.
Here are all the important facts about the entertainer you need to know:
Paula Abdul is an American dancer, choreographer, singer, actress, and TV star. She started her career as a cheerleader for the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team at the age of 18, and later became the head choreographer for the Laker Girls, where she was soon discovered by The Jacksons.
After choreographing music videos for Janet Jackson, she signed her own record deal. Her debut album Forever Your Girl in 1988 became one of the most successful debut albums, selling 7 million copies in the US, and set a record for the most number-one singles from a debut album.
She was later one of the original judges on American Idol from 2002 to 2009, and later appeared as a judge on The X Factor, Live to Dance, and So You Think You Can Dance.
She was also a choreographer for various films, including Can't Buy Me Love, The Running Man, Big, Coming to America, Jerry Maguire and American Beauty.
Among her biggest hits include: 'Straight Up', 'Cold Hearted', 'Opposites Attract', 'Forever Your Girl', 'Rush Rush' and 'The Promises of a New Day'.
Paula Abdul was born on June 19, 1962. She celebrated her 56th birthday in 2018.
She was born in San Fernando, California to Jewish parents. Her father, Harry Abdul, was born in Aleppo, Syria, was raised in Brazil, and later moved to the United States.
Her mother, the concert pianist Lorraine M Rykiss, grew up in Jewish families in Minnedosa, Manitoba, and has Ashkenazi Jewish ancestors from Ukraine.
Paula also has a sister named Wendy.
Paula Abdul was married to actor Emilio Estevez from 1992 to 1994.
She later married clothing designer Brad Beckerman in 1996, but they divorced in 1998, after 17 months of marriage.
Paula does not have any children.
Paula Abdul has an estimated net worth of around £22.8 million ($30 million), according to Celebrity Net Worth.