One of Bocelli's first lucky breaks came in 1992 when he recorded a demo tape of "Miserere" for Zucchero Fornaciari, with the song co-written by U2's Bono. That recording was heard by famed tenor Luciano Pavarotti, for whom the track was originally written. Pavarotti then encouraged Fornaciari to use Bocelli for the song. In the end, Bocelli and Pavarotti performed "Miserere" together, which became a Europe-wide smash hit.
A singer on the rise, Bocelli competed in the Sanremo Festival in 1994. He won the top honors in the newcomers' category. That same year, Bocelli released his first album in Italy, Il Mare Calmo Della Sera. He scored a major hit in Europe a short time later with Bocelli, which featured "Con Te Partiro." The song later became a popular duet with Sarah Brightman as "Time to Say Goodbye," which appeared on his 1997 album Romanza.
With Sogno (1999), Bocelli cemented his status as an international singing sensation. The hit record included a duet with Celine Dion on the song "The Prayer." More popular albums soon followed, including 2001's Cieli di Toscana and 2006's Amore. He also earned Grammy nods for Best New Artist in 1999 and in 2000 for "Sogno" (Best Male Pop Vocal Performance) and "The Prayer" (Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals).
In addition to compilations and collaborative works, Bocelli has released numerous studio and live albums through his career including Viaggio Italiano(1995), Aria: The Opera Album (1998), Sacred Arias (1999), Verdi (2000), Cieli di Toscana (2001), Sentimento (2002), Andrea (2004), Amore (2006), Under the Desert Sky (2006), Incanto (2008), Vivere Live in Tuscany (2008), My Christmas (2009), and Concerto: One Night in Central Park (2011).
More recently, Bocelli collaborated with Jennifer Lopez and Nelly Furtado on his 2013 album Passione. He also joined forces with Placido Domingo and Ana Maria Martinez on 2014's Manon Lescaut.
In 2015, Bocelli released Cinema, his 15th studio album. The tenor had longed to create an album of his favorite movie songs originally performed by singers such as Frank Sinatra and Mario Lanza. The album features his renditions of classic soundtrack favorites such as “Maria” from West Side Story, “Moon River” from Breakfast at Tiffany’s, “No Llores Por Mi Argentina, from Evita, and “Por uno cabeza” from Scent of a Woman. The album also features duets with Ariana Grande and Nicole Scherzinger.
That same year, he sang “The Lord’s Prayer” before Pope Francis in Philadelphia during the pontiff's historic visit to the United States. Speaking about the performance with Time magazine, Bocelli reflected, "Having the chance to sing again in front of the Holy Father, for whom I have deep and sincere devotion, offering my humble contribution as a fervent Catholic, is a great honor for me. St. Augustine notoriously reminds us that singing is an extraordinary form of prayer. And this is my goal, my purpose and my joy: to pray together."
Sourced by Biography.com
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