Andrea Bocelli is an Italian opera singer, songwriter, and record producer. It was evident at birth that Bocelli had many problems with his sight, eventually becoming diagnosed with congenital glaucoma.
Bocelli became completely blind at age 12. A Tuscan, like Puccini and Mascagni, Bocelli was born on the family farm of Lajatico, among the vineyards of the countryside of Pisa. His parents must be given credit for having encouraged his musical talent, allowing him to start studying the piano from the age of only six years old.
Later his musical passion extended to the flute and the saxophone but it was in his voice that Bocelli discovered the ideal instrument. This was the beginning of the formative process which would produce Bocelli, the star, a modern but old-fashioned tenor.
Italian spinto tenor Franco Corelli praised Bocelli's voice after hearing it for the first time during a master class in 1986 in Turin, Italy, and he later gave Bocelli private voice lessons. Since 1982, Bocelli has sold over 90 million records worldwide.
He has had success as a crossover performer, bringing classical music to the top of international pop charts. Bocelli was made a Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic in 2006 and was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on March 2, 2010, for his contribution to Live Theater.
Legendary pop singer Celine Dion has stated, "If God would have a singing voice, he must sound a lot like Andrea Bocelli."
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