One of the most successful Latin artists of the 20th century, singer Ricky Martin graduated from teen pop stardom as a member of Menudo to a juggernaut solo act that broke open the U.S. music market for Latin performers with such chart-topping hits as "Livin' La Vida Loca," "She Bangs" and "Nobody Wants to Be Lonely." Born Enrique Martin Morales in San Juan, Puerto Rico, he developed an interest in music and performing for audience at an early age by appearing in school productions and singing in his church choir. He began appearing in commercials on Puerto Rican television by the age of nine, and sought to hone his talents through acting and singing lessons. In 1984, he auditioned to replace Ricky Melendez as lead singer in Menudo; though initially rejected for allegedly being too short, Martin persisted, and after two additional auditions, joined the group in the summer of that year. Martin would remain with Menudo during the height of its international popularity, playing to massive audiences across the globe until he departed the group at the age of 17 in 1987. After completing high school in Puerto Rico, Martin relocated to New York City, where he enrolled at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. But he would drop out shortly before the start of the school year to appear in a play, "Mama Ama el Rock" ("Mom Loves to Rock") in Mexico City. The production led to his first acting role on Mexican television, where he played the leader of a pop group on the telenovela "Alcanzar una estrella" (Canal de las Estrellas, 1990). The fictional group proved popular enough to warrant actual performances through Mexico and two albums, which in turn led to Martin joining the roster for Sony Discos, the media giant's Latin music label. Though the contract offered miserly returns for his efforts - he was awarded one cent in royalties for each album sold - Martin saw chart success with "Fuego Contra Fuego," the second single from his 1991 self-titled debut album. Its follow-up, Me Amaras (1993), proved even more successful by reaching No. 22 on the Latin Pop charts, and on the advice of his agent, Martin relocated to Los Angeles to try his hand at stardom on multiple fronts. He took the role of Miguel, a bartender and aspiring singer on the daytime soap "General Hospital" (ABC, 1963-), but found the experience unrewarding; Martin soon returned to music and scored a personal and professional triumph with "A Medio Vivir" (1995). The album broke away from the polished balladry of his previous releases and embraced more traditional Latin sounds, as epitomized by its second single, "Maria." Though label executives were wary of the experiment, "Maria" was a colossal hit in numerous international markets, and the album itself reached the Top 10 on the Billboard Latin Pop chart. The following year, Martin began a lengthy stint on Broadway as Marius in Les Miserables, which drew enthusiastic responses from fans and critics. While touring to promote A Medio Vivir, he recorded his fourth solo LP, Vuelve (1998), a grueling experience which also coincided with the recording of "La copa de la vida," the 1998 single for the World Cup. His performance of the song at the Cup final in 1998 was seen by more than a billion viewers across the globe, and proved to be a watershed moment for Latin pop that was expanded exponentially by his performance of the song at the 41st Annual Grammy Awards that same year. Martin earned a standing ovation for his showstopping performance, as well as his first Grammy for Best Latin Pop Performance, and saw the first two singles from Vuelve - "Perdido sin ti" and the title track - rocket to the top of the Hot Latin singles chart, while "La copa" topped charts in numerous international markets. In 1999, Martin made his English-language music debut with a self-titled debut for Columbia Records. A massive hit on the strength of its lead single, the propulsive "Livin' La Vida Loca," Ricky Martin opened at No. 1 on the Billboard 2000, and would go on to sell more than 22 million copies worldwide. More importantly, its success informed American music executives that Latino artists could yield hits, which paved the way for such performers as Jennifer Lopez and Shakira to enjoy their own success. For the next seven years, Martin would enjoy unprecedented success in both the English-language and international markets: albums like Sound Loaded (2000) and Almas del Silencio consistently reached the top of the charts or Top 10, and his 2006 MTV Unplugged album yielded two Latin Grammys, including Best Male Pop Vocal Album. The following year, Martin took a year-long break from music, during which he penned his autobiography, the best-selling Me (2010), but more significantly, came out publically as a gay man after dodging the question for the majority of his career. The announcement had little effect on his music career, as evidenced by Musica+Alma+Sexo (2011) debuted at No 3 on the US albums chart. It would be his last album of wholly original material for more than a half-decade, as Martin focused his attention on a variety of outside interests, from a return to Broadway as Che in a revival of "Evita" in 2012 to stints as a coach for "The Voice Australia" (Nine Network, 2012-) and "The Voice Mexico" (Las Estrellas, 2014-). He also teamed with fellow Latin superstar Jennifer Lopez for the singer Wisin's 2014 track "Adrenalina," and toured frequently before releasing his tenth studio album, A Quien Quiera Escuchar (For Those Who Want to Listen) in 2015. Though it only reached No. 20 in the Billboard 200, it topped both the Latin Album and Latin Pop charts, and delivered Martin two Grammys for Best Latin Pop Album and Pop/Rock Album of the Year. Not content to rest on his laurels, Martin launched a 2016 residency at the Monte Carlo Casino in Las Vegas and earned an Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for his melancholy turn as Antoni D'Amico, the partner of fashion designer Gianni Versace, in "American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace" (FX, 2018). That same year, Martin topped the Latin Airplay charts with "FIebre" ("Fever"), a collaboration with the hugely popular Puerto Rican reggaeton act Wisin and Yandel.