Born in the village of Lajatico in Tuscany, Italy, in 1958 Andrea Bocelli grew up listening to Italian tenors such as Del Monaco, Gigli, and Franco Corelli. He played many musical instruments as a child including the piano, trumpet, trombone, harp, guitar, drums, saxophone, and flute. At age 12, he lost his vision after a soccer accident.
Bocelli was discovered in 1992, by Zucchero giving opera tenor Luciano Pavarotti a tape of Andrea singing “Miserere.” The next time Zucchero went on tour, Bocelli joined him and sang the duet “Miserere” as well as Puccini’s “Nessun Dorma” on stage.
His debut album, Il Mare Calmo Della Sera, was released in 1994. In 1997, Bocelli started getting international fame with the song “Time to Say Goodbye,” also known as “Con Te Partirò” in Italian and “Por ti Volaré” in Spanish in a duet with Sarah Brightman. Other favorite Andrea Bocelli singles include “Vivo Per Lei,” or “I Live For Her,” and “The Prayer,” Bocelli’s duet with Celine Dion.
Andrea Bocelli made his international debut in 1997 with the album Romanza, which went multi-platinum, and the following year he completed an opera album called Aria. Andrea Bocelli’s first major operatic role was in 1998, playing Rodolfo in La Boheme by Puccini. Since then, he has sung opera arias from Il Travatore, Werther, Tosca, Carmen, and other classics.