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Sabrina Carpenter’s Rise to Stardom

A look at how her career began before she skyrocketed to international fame.

(Image: Shutterstock/Ron Adar)

Sabrina Carpenter has achieved global success in such a short time, from her early acting career to her sold-out world tour in 2022, Emails I Can’t Send, to being one of the opening acts for Taylor Swift’s The Eras Tour. She is a trendsetter, fashion icon, and pop sensation. But how did she get to where she is now?

Sabrina initially found fame at the age of 10. She posted videos of herself singing covers on YouTube and embodied the artists she looked up to. Among the best of her covers is Taylor Swift’s ‘White Horse.’ In Sydney, she experienced a full circle moment, joining Taylor on stage at The Eras Tour to duet ‘White Horse,’ 14 years after she originally covered it.

Disney Days

While she had small acting jobs on shows like Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, the actress’ career-launching role was on Disney Channel’s Girl Meets World. Debuting in 2014, the show introduced the world to young Sabrina, who played Maya Hart, the main character’s best friend.

Sabrina Carpenter with the Girl Meets World cast at the 2014 Radio Disney Awards. Shutterstock/ Kathy Hutchins

Under mentorship at Hollywood Records, the Girl Meets World star released her first single, ‘Can’t Blame a Girl for Trying,’ in 2014 as well. As a result, Sabrina won her first award for the song at the 2015 Radio Disney Music Awards in the category ‘XOXO: Best Crush Song’. It was the lead single for her debut album, Eyes Wide Open. Carpenter was described as “the right kind of great,” with the album setting her up to create her own musical identity and to “leave her mark” on the world, according to Headline Planet. Another three albums were later released under Hollywood Records: Evolution (2016), Singular: Act 1 (2018) and Singular: Act 2 (2019).

In 2016, the Eyes Wide Open singer embarked on her first world tour. The EVOlution tour began in Nashville and visited Canada, the UK, France, Belgium, Germany and Italy. The popularity of this tour showcased Sabrina’s talent and artistry. Consequently, her name was mentioned alongside the likes of fellow Disney greats Miley Cyrus and Selena Gomez. In 2017, she caught the eye of singing sensation, Ariana Grande, and opened her Dangerous Woman tour.

Island Records

The next phase of Carpenter’s career began in 2021. After leaving Hollywood Records, Sabrina signed a deal with Island Records. ‘Skin’, released shortly after joining forces with the label, was her first single to chart on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was so well received that it was sung live on The Late Late Show with James Cordon and at the 32nd annual GLAAD Media Awards. Her fifth studio album then followed in 2022. Emails I Can’t Send was a hit. The singer revealed she wanted the album “to feel a lot more simple and timeless”, using her lockdown experiences as therapy for her writing.

The Emails I Can’t Send tour sent the ‘Nonsense’ singer around the world in 2022. On her biggest tour to date, she wowed the crowds with her bubbly personality and strong vocals. Many fans were excited by the covers of popular songs, like Britney Spears ‘…Baby One More Time, Madonna’s ‘Like a Virgin’ and ABBA’s ‘Lay All Your Love on Me’. It’s a cute nod to her beginnings on Youtube.

However, the hitmaker’s career has not been without its controversies. Filming the music video for ‘Feather,’ Carpenter chose a catholic church in New York as her backdrop. Adorning a veil, she danced around the altar. While many fans thought the video was a perfect example of self-expression, others were angry. It was stated that permission was given, though the priest argued that he did not know the extent of her intentions. He was relieved of administrative duties soon after. In response, Sabrina responded that “Jesus was a carpenter”.

The Eras Tour

After her whirl-wind tour, the star joined Taylor Swift on The Ears Tour. Skyrocketing to new heights, Carpenter’s career has never been better. She has joined Taylor in America, South America, Asia, and Australia. Fans go wild when she changes the lyrics to ‘Nonsense’ to fit with the country she is performing in.

Who knows what is next for Sabrina Carpenter, but she looks set to keep climbing to new heights.

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Written By

MA Creative Writing and Publishing student at the University of Chester in England, UK. I have a passion for history and mythology, the older the better. You can find me reading, usually in a coffee shop, or down by the river Dee. My article writing began when I was 16 in college when I asked the head of the student council to start a student lead magazine. I then went on to write book reviews for University of Chester's English Department magazine during my undergrad.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Sam Beresford-Kay

    April 5, 2024 at 10:09 pm

    Very interesting insight into Sabrina’s career. Has been fun to follow but also really enjoyed this written piece – thank you!

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