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British Group Steps to Break Up

December 27, 2001

LONDON (AP) _ After five years of chart-topping success and more than 12 million records sold, the British pop group Steps announced that it is breaking up.

``After five incredible years, we have decided it’s time to move on to new challenges,″ Faye, Claire, Lisa, H and Lee said in a joint statement Wednesday. ``We have always said that when the time came, we would leave as good friends and go out while we were on top.″

Steps shot to fame as a line-dancing novelty act. Their bubbly image, Abba-esque melodies and the skills of producer Pete Waterman helped establish them as one of Britain’s most successful pop bands.

Their biggest hit was ``Tragedy,″ which sold 1.2 million copies and went platinum in Britain after claiming the No. 1 spot on the singles chart in January 1999. The band also had an incredible run of 12 consecutive singles in the top five.

Steps recently saw ``Gold,″ a greatest hits album, debut at No. 1 on the British charts. It has sold more than 1.4 million copies.

The group picked up three prizes at the recent British Smash Hits Awards including best live act and a prestigious Hall of Fame trophy.

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On the Net:

Official Steps Web site: http://www.stepsofficial.com/frames.html

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