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Ricky Martin: The Man Who Lived La Vida Loca

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Ricky Martin is one of the biggest pop stars of the modern era. Ricky Martin had numerous hits in both Spanish and English, making him a truly global star. 

Here Are Some Interesting Facts About Ricky Martin

Ricky Martin was born into a working-class family

Ricky was born in San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico. His mother Nereida Morales worked as an accountant, and his father Enrique Martin Negroni worked as a psychologist. When the boy was two years old, his parents separated, and Martin alternately lived with his father’s new family and with his paternal grandmother. In addition to him, two brothers and a sister subsequently appeared in the house, and two more half-brothers appeared in the mother’s new family.

Ricky Martin was a child star

As a child, Ricky became a real advertising star. He has been featured in over 11 videos on Puerto Rican television. At 13, the teenager was selected to join the youth pop group Menudo. Martin turned out to be the youngest participant, and at first, the project management refused him, but the boy stubbornly continued to come to the castings and eventually received a vacant position.

Ricky Martin left Menudo to go solo

With the team, the guy traveled all over South America, where the boy band was very popular. But by 1987, interest in Menudo began to wane, and after four years of collaboration and 11 full-length albums, Ricky Martin left the group.

Ricky Martin moved to the USA at 17

The 17-year-old boy decided to try his luck abroad. He moved to the United States and attended the Tisch School of the Arts. But I didn’t have time to start classes, as he received interesting offers from both a Mexican theater and a recording studio.

Ricky Martin appeared on General Hospital

Ricky Martin accepted both offers and was successful in both areas. In Mexico City, he began working with great enthusiasm in the musical “Mama Loves Rock,” where film producers drew attention to him. The actor began starring in the television melodrama “Reaching the Star,” where he appeared in two seasons, and then in the full-length version “Even Closer to the Star.”

Martin could later be seen in the medical drama General Hospital, where he played the role of singer Miguel Mores. 

The actor did not forget about the theater stage. In 1996, he played the main role in the production of Les Miserables based on the novel by Victor Hugo, and in 2012 he returned to Broadway and sang in the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Evita.

In the series “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story,” based on the book by journalist Maureen Orth, Ricky played the role of Antonio D’Amico, the designer’s partner, with whom he lived until his death. Gianni himself was portrayed on the card by Edgar Ramirez.

Ricky Martin signed a terrible recording contract 

In parallel with his acting career, Ricky Martin’s solo musical career began. He signed a contract with the Latin American branch of Sony Music Entertainment and signed without even reading the contract. As a result, he began to receive only one cent from each disc sold.

At that time, Ricky had little interest in money: he wanted to become a real star. Ricky Martin’s first recorded album in Spanish went gold not only in South America but also in the United States. Hits such as Fuego Contra Fuego and El Amor de Mi Vida found themselves in worldwide radio rotation. This was followed by equally successful discs Me Amarás and A Medio Vivir. The track Maria from the latter became the young singer’s first worldwide hit.

Ricky Martin performed the official song of the FIFA World Cup 1998

In 1998, Ricky’s new album Vuelve was released, but the main achievement of this year was his performance in the final of the football world championship in France with the composition La Copa de la Vida, which was transformed into a kind of anthem of the championship.

Ricky Martin also became an English language pop star

By this time, the singer had published the English-language album Ricky Martin and released the single Livin’ la Vida Loca. This composition changed the biography of Ricky Martin and also became a ticket to the English-language market for other musicians from Latin America. The song became so popular all over the world that it was later used more than once in film production. So, in a modified version it was heard in the cartoon “Shrek 2”.

Ricky Martin is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador

Popularity gave the artist great opportunities, which he also used to help those in need. Among his projects is the Fundacion Ricky Martin, designed to help different groups of the population. Thus, the company organized children’s camps.

Ricky Martin with Syrian refugees in Lebanon

During a trip to India in the early 2000s, the singer prevented the involvement of teenage girls in prostitution. The incident greatly influenced the artist. A year later, he became one of UNICEF’s goodwill ambassadors and organized a campaign against the modern slave trade and sex tourism. Martin also helped people affected by natural disasters and did not remain indifferent to the fate of doctors during the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s no surprise that Ricky’s actions as a philanthropist have earned him numerous philanthropic awards.

The artist has always been partial to the fate of his people and representatives of Latin America. When Hillary Clinton, known for defending the interests of Latin Americans, ran for president of the United States, Martin supported her, which the media did not fail to mention.

Ricky Martin has children via surrogacy

Ricky Martin with his first two sons

The artist became the father of two twins – Matteo and Valentino, who were born by a surrogate mother. Being a parent helped Ricky become a writer. In 2013, he published a book for little ones, “Santiago the Dreamer in the Land of Stars.”

Ricky Martin is gay

In 2010, Ricky Martin wrote on his official website that he is gay. According to the musician, years of silence and hiding the truth put pressure on him, and it seemed right to him to talk about his sexual orientation.

That same year, on the Oprah Winfrey Show, the singer publicly repeated that he was gay. Soon the musician even introduced his partner, economist Carlos Gonzalez Abella. The couple talked about getting married soon, but in 2014, Martin and Abella went their separate ways.

The singer repeatedly touched on the topic of his personal life in his interviews. He reported that he does not want to be dependent on one orientation, therefore he considers both men and women as partners, but he is ready to build only same-sex relationships.

In 2016, the Swedish artist of Syrian origin Jwan Yosef became Martin’s companion. He is 12 years younger than the singer. Before their first meeting, they communicated online for six months. As Ricky later recalled, his acquaintance with Dzhvan made a great impression on him, the singer stopped breathing with admiration.

The couple did not delay the marriage; the wedding took place a year after they met. And in 2018, a daughter, Lucia, appeared in the family. In October 2019, the artist found the happiness of fatherhood for the fourth time. The family welcomed a son, Renn Martin-Yosef. The artist reported this from his page on Instagram, where he posted a photo with his child and husband.

In the summer of 2023, Martin surprised fans with the news of a divorce. According to him, the couple maintained friendly relations and are still raising children together.

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