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Franc D'Ambrosio (2010)
August 11, 1962 |
Bronx, New York, United States
Franc D'Ambrosio (born August 11, 1962 in Bronx, New York), is an American singer and actor, best known for his role in the stage version of Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera. He also played the adult Anthony Vito Corleone in The Godfather Part III.
Franc D'Ambrosio grew up in the Bronx, New York, in a family of bakers. After high school he attended the Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. He then had the opportunity to study at the famed Vocal Academy of Lucca in Italy. While there, he was personally invited to study with tenor Luciano Pavarotti at his home in Pesaro.
D'Ambrosio made his Broadway debut in the first revival of Sweeney Todd. It was while he was in this production that Francis Ford Coppola discovered D'Ambrosio. Paramount Pictures had been conducting an international talent search (for well over a year) to fill the part of Anthony Corleone - the opera-singing son of Al Pacino & Diane Keaton in The Godfather III. Their search was finally over - D'Ambrosio was cast and he had the honor of singing the Academy Award winning theme song, "Speak Softly Love" ("Brucia la Terra") on the Original Motion Picture soundtrack.
It was immediately following The Godfather III that D'Ambrosio was cast in the title role of The Phantom of the Opera. He had actually been auditioning for Miss Saigon but the producers were so impressed with his performance that they immediately offered him the role in Phantom. During his time in San Francisco, Franc and various cast members recorded an album of Christmas music. Franc's performance of "Panis Angelicus" on this CD earned him a Grammy consideration for Best Male Vocalist 1999.
As a result of his Phantom status, D'Ambrosio served as the red carpet correspondent for Access Hollywood's coverage of the 2004 American premiere of Joel Schumacher's musical film production of The Phantom of the Opera.
D'Ambrosio worked with a group to develop an off-Broadway production of Valentino. It was during this process that D'Ambrosio caught the eye of Barry Manilow, who personally selected him to create and star as the male lead Tony in the pre-Broadway, national tour of Copacabana. The show enjoyed a successful year-long tour. D'Ambrosio's performance that earned him a nomination for the National Theatre Award for Best Male Performer in a Musical.
D'Ambrosio's next project was a one man show Franc D'Ambrosio's Broadway, conceived by D'Ambrosio and the director Abe Reybold. The show is a celebration of the music that has established Broadway as an American art form. With the success of his 3 year, 150 city, sold out tour with this one man show - D'Ambrosio has joined the ranks of the famed Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman, as one of the handful of Phantom alumni to successfully crossover into a flourishing solo career. The C, Franc D'Ambrosio's Broadway, earned a Grammy Consideration for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album 2005.
Franc D'Ambrosio's Broadway was also filmed by Burn Pictures for release on DVD (2005).
He appeared with Michael Feinstein, Amanda McBroom, Maureen McGovern and others on a CD titled In Good Company (LML Music) released in early 2005.
D'Ambrosio has made numerous television appearances, including Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood and MTV's Spotlight. There have also been special television events such as the NBC special Brian Boitano's Skating Spectacular. The show was filmed live at the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas, and aired nationally New Year's Day 2005. D'Ambrosio's rendition of "What Kind of Fool Am I" (from the CD Franc D'Ambrosio's Broadway) was played during Brian Boitano's performance on The Today Show December 30, 2004, to promote the TV special.
The following February D'Ambrosio appeared in The 2005 Tribute to Movies on Ice, as Special Musical Guest with Michael Bolton. Brian Boitano skated to D'Ambrosio's performance of "The Music of the Night", from the play The Phantom of the Opera. In 2007 D'Ambrosio introduced his show, Franc D'Ambrosio's Hollywood, which was billed as is one man's humorous, nostalgic look at America's "Dream Factories" and the songs they immortalized. After debuting March 13, 2007, at the world famous Empire Plush Room in San Francisco, the show toured the US.