Anitta has always been an open and honest book, and the WSJ finally had the chance to read it. As of today (Oct. 25), WSJ Magazine named Anitta the 2022 Music Innovator, and what better way to celebrate a chart-topping year than with an award reflecting all she’s done for Brazil and far beyond?
WSJ’s Innovator Issue & Awards — presented for 11 years and counting — honors the year’s groundbreaking visionaries and their global impact on entertainment in all sectors. The Brazilian pop star spoke with WSJ about reaching international success, how her No.1 hit song “Envolver” was written in less than a day, transitioning into acting once her music career feels complete, and even spoke candidly about her plastic surgeries. Frankly, she loves talking about the topic. “It’s nothing to do with me not being happy with myself,” she said of the plastic surgeries. “For me, it’s like changing my hair. Even if it’s not good or the way I expected, I still like the process. I like the adrenaline.”
After all, the cover of her latest album, Versions of Me, features six images of Anitta at different stages of her plastic surgeries: nose job, jaw-shapping procedures, and breast augmentations. She has nothing to conceal and treasures each step of the way, similarly like her career.
Anitta began her career in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, becoming a superstar with a mix of Brazilian and Latine rhymes that infuse the best of her home country and the world. With the release of her trilingual album, Versions of Me, and hit single “Envolver,” she’s reached the U.S. market like never before. Now, she sings and writes in five different languages, making hits worldwide, and collaborating with the likes of Missy Elliot, Madonna, Snoop Dogg, and more. Did we mention the staggering 63 million Instagram followers, too?
But it wasn’t an easy evolution. It was a long and challenging journey, especially as a woman out of Brazil, where women have never made it past their own market. Anitta recalled the skepticism of the Brazilian industry about her global plans. “They said, ‘Well, you can try to go international, but that’s impossible. Nobody’s ever made it. The last person was Carmen Miranda,’” she says. “‘Impossible?’ This word just makes me want to go for it.”
Even the release of “Envolver” became a complicated situation. Anitta shared with WSJ that the track was born during her vacation in the Dominican Republic with Puerto Rican production duo Súbelo NEO. They ended up creating an international superhit while the three relaxed poolside. Yet, the trouble arose when Warner Music Latina, the label handling Spanish language releases since signing with Warner Records in 2020, thought the song should be a duet with a male singer. “I was so sure that it was going to be big,” she said with a flip of her hand. “They were saying I couldn’t make it happen by myself.”
Yet completely unfazed, she decided to embark on the trek alone to release “Envolver” anyway. And good thing she did, as the single went viral on Tik Tok and radio play, making Anitta the first Brazilian artist and first female solo Latine artist to reach No. 1 on Spotify Global.
Similarly, when asked if she will sing and perform forever, Anitta gives a shocking answer: “Not forever. No way.” Instead, she’ll be making music for another five to six years and then will switch over to being an actress. She’s eager to “bring the butterflies,” as she described it. “It’s pointless for me to keep pushing myself to keep doing things that won’t fulfill new dreams. I’ve already done what was impossible. What is bigger than No. 1?”
For now, Anitta is enjoying her success, looking over scripts and planning a memorable 30th birthday trip for March. But, as we wait for more tour dates to be announced, we can’t help but feel eager to see where this new chapter of Anitta’s life takes her. Whether into new music or acting, were ready to see it all bloom.
Check out the interview below.