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Donna Summer

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A new documentary about the illustrious and extremely talented Queen of Disco, Donna Summer, is coming to our screens via HBO and HBO Max.

Love To Love You, Donna Summer will be a “deeply personal portrait” of the five-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter, according to a media release. The 1 hour and 45 minute-long documentary will include Summer’s personal reflections and memories recounted by her loved ones. The film will also have Summer’s era-defining disco tracks sprinkled throughout never-before-seen home footage and snapshots of the superstar. 

Viewers will see “the iconic artist as she creates music that takes her from the avant-garde music scene in Germany to the glitter and bright lights of dance clubs in New York [and] worldwide acclaim.” The film will showcase Summer’s various artistries, “from songwriting to painting,” and the star’s highs and lows as a global artist.

The project is co-directed by award-winning filmmaker Roger Ross Williams and Summer’s daughter, Brooklyn Sudano.

In the trailer, the singer’s captivating stage presence and one-of-a-kind voice were at the forefront.

The two-minute teaser highlighted the singer’s struggles with fame and how she navigated motherhood and lived out her multifaceted identity.

“I have a secret life. You’re looking at me, but what you see is not what I am,” Summer revealed.

“My approach to singing? I approach it as an actress. I don’t approach it as a singer — it’s really acting,” she continued. “I’m not trying to be me.”



Born in 1948, Boston native LaDonna Adrian Gaines made her stage debut in a church at 10 years old. 

Just ahead of graduating high school, the talent moved to Munich, Germany, to perform in a production of the musical Hair. Summer released her first studio album, “Lady of the Night,” in 1974. Her second project, Love To Love You, Baby, achieved global success thanks to its title track. In 1975, the song peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Dance Chart, No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 3 on the Billboard R&B chart. Summer was the first Black woman to have a music video played on MTV with her 1983 song “She Works Hard For The Money.” She released 17 studio albums in total throughout her decades-long career. 

The singer died in May 2012 at the age of 63 following a private battle with lung cancer.

Love To Love You, Donna Summer hits HBO and HBO Max for streaming May 20.

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