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Oscar-nominated performer Andrea Bocelli will receive Variety’s inaugural Achievement in Intl. Music award in December. Throughout the course of his career spanning almost three decades, Bocelli has sold in excess of 90 million albums and achieved new levels of crossover success with his 15 recorded pop and classical albums, three greatest hits albums, and nine complete operas. His song “The Prayer” as featured in 1998’s “Quest for Camelot,” won a Golden Globe and was nominated for an Oscar.

“Receiving honors and recognition for me is a great satisfaction, but at the same time somewhat embarrassing because you have to continue to deserve the recognition you receive. The more you receive the more expectations grow,” Bocelli said. “However, in this case my joy and emotion are infinitely greater as I discover that I am the recipient of so much benevolence on the part of such a prestigious institution, which has been the voice and the heart of show business and entertainment throughout the world for over 100 years. The only way I can return so much affection is by attempting to give the best of myself and above all continuing with my studies and singing, as my wish is to offer audiences a moment of peace and beauty.”

Bocelli’s 2018 album “Si” featuring work from Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa, and Josh Groban, debuted at No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, the international artist’s first No. 1 album on the Billboard chart. In his first body of new material in 14 years, his duet with his son Matteo Bocelli “Fall on Me” quickly showed itself as a viral hit with a music video that currently has over 55 million views. Additionally, Bocelli will hit nine cities on his U.S. tour, which will be highlighted by two performances at NYC’s Madison Square Garden on Dec. 18 and 19.

He is also being recognized for his philanthropic works. Through his self-titled foundation whose aim is “to make sure that everyone is afforded the opportunity to express themselves to their full potential,” more than 20 projects have been completed in developing countries and Italy through projects for education, health, and social inclusion.

This marks the first time Variety has presented the honor to someone within the international music field. Previously, the award has been bestowed to Achievement in Intl.  television and film executives and talents including CBS’ Armando Nunez and Gilles Pelisson.

“One quarter of a century after he emerged as a major international musical artist and over 90 million records later, Andrea Bocelli is known and loved throughout the world. Today, through his transformative concerts on stages around the globe and his unforgettable recordings that top the charts in nearly every country on earth, Bocelli is operating at the peak of his formidable talents. It’s both an honor and a thrill to present Mr. Bocelli with Variety’s inaugural Achievement in International Music Award,” said Variety senior vice president of content, Steven Gaydos.

Bocelli’s work will be highlighted with an editorial feature in Variety‘s Dec. 17 weekly publication.