Born as Stefani Joanne Angelian Germanotta, Lady Gaga began to learn piano at the age of 4, and wrote her first piano ballad at 13 years old. Gaga was an avid actor in high school musicals, and by 16 she was playing and singing in front of live audiences. However, she did unsuccessfully audition for parts in New York shows. She had her achievements even in university, but eventually she withdrew from school to focus on her music career. Her father agreed to pay her rent for one year to allow her to work on her career with the condition she re-enroll back in university if she was unsuccessful in launching herself into stardom.