Stefani Germanotta, known to most as Lady Gaga, has been no stranger to fame since her aptly named debut album, The Fame, was released in 2008. Now, over a decade later, Gaga’s influence only continues to grow, and today she is one of the most iconic figures in pop culture — with a net worth to match.
A pianist and singer since childhood, young Stefani regularly performed at open-mic nights as well as in plays and musicals throughout her early life. She eventually went to school for music at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, though she dropped out during her sophomore year to pursue her career full-time. But she had a bit of a bumpy start.
She was signed by Def Jam Recordings in 2006, only to be dropped just a few months later. But she eventually signed with Cherrytree Records, an Interscope imprint, and two years later, The Fame was released. The song's first two singles, "Just Dance" and "Poker Face," reached number one in the U.S. and around the world, and Gaga won her first two Grammys for the album at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards.
Since then, Gaga has released five successful studio albums (with tens of millions of copies sold), gone on six world tours, won a total of nine Grammy Awards, one BAFTA Award, three Brit Awards, thirteen MTV Video Music Awards, and countless other accolades. To top it all off, she has even started acting again, most notably starring as Ally, the lead in A Star Is Born, for which she received critical acclaim and an Oscar nomination.
So how does all of this success translate into money? Gaga’s net worth has most recently been reported as $300 million. And that figure certainly makes sense: Two of her tours alone, the "Born This Way Ball" in 2012-2013 and "Artpop" tour in 2014, reportedly earned $382.3 million and $257.1 million, respectively. Factor in earnings from her album sales, acting roles, and other business ventures, and it’s no surprise that Gaga's career has brought her a pretty penny.
Despite her wealth and fame, the multi-talented Gaga has prioritized activism and philanthropy in all that she does, donating millions of dollars to various charitable efforts and creating collaborations and products to fund-raise for HIV/AIDS initiatives and natural-disaster relief. Plus, she launched the Born This Way Foundation, a nonprofit focused on youth empowerment. Overall, Gaga is a great example of how celebrities can use their influence and artistry not just to get super rich, but to help people as well.