Los Angeles (E! Online) – Britney Spears is back at No. 1.
For the first time in more than five years, Britney topped the Billboard 200. Her new album Circus sold more than half a million copies for the week ended Sunday.
This gives Spears the second biggest female bow of the year, topping debut weeks by Mariah Carey, Miley Cyrus, Madonna, and Beyoncé and only trailing Taylor Swift. Once the final retail receipts are counted, the album should claim the seventh biggest bow of 2008.
Back in October, Britney set the stage for her comeback when "Womanizer" became her first Hot 100 chart-topper since "…" a decade ago. "Womanizer" also set the record for the biggest digital sales debut by a female artist (286,000 copies) since started tracking downloads in 2003.
"Imagine a year ago, did anyone think that today she would be able to come out with an album that would, not only just debut at No. 1, but also do half a million copies in its first week?" asks Billboard Senior Chart Manager Keith Caulfield. "It's surprising, but at the same time it's got to be pretty satisfying for Britney and for her record label."
And it's not just album and song sales soaring, because according to her website, "This tour is selling out like hot cakes! In response to overwhelming ticket sales, we have several more dates in cities including Los Angeles, London, Chicago, Toronto and Newark!"
So expect the circus to be coming to your town soon.