Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll (born February 2, 1977), known mononymously as Shakira, is a Colombian singer-songwriter, dancer, record producer, choreographer and model who emerged in the music scene of Colombia and Latin America in the early 1990s. Born and raised in Barranquilla, Shakira began performing in school, demonstrating her vocal ability with rock and roll, Latin and Arabic influences with her own original twist on belly dancing. Shakira is a native Spanish speaker who speaks fluent English and Portuguese as well as some Italian, French, Catalan and Arabic. After a poor commercial reception with local producers on her first two albums, and being little-known outside Colombia, Shakira decided to produce her own brand of music.
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