NEW YORK, NY. (SYCO/Columbia Records) - The multi-platinum-selling pop-operatic quartet Il Divo
rounded out an extremely good year with the group's latest album, Siempre ("Always
") achieving chart peaks and sales records around the world.
By mid-December, Siempre was selling upwards of 165,000 copies a week, despite an absence of traditional radio playlist support. For three weeks in a row, Siempre eclipsed Il Divo's previous best U.S. sales week: January 29, 2006, when the group's Ancora debuted at No 1 on the Billboard Top 200 with first week's sales of 156,407.
Following the group's spectacular performances on a series of U.S. television programs including "The Oprah Winfrey Show" (December 6), "The Today Show" (December 8), "The Martha Stewart Show" (December 11), and "Christmas In Washington" (December 13), Il Divo sold more than 350,000 albums and DVDs in the United States in a single week with three albums - Siempre (No 6), Il Divo (No 66), and Ancora (No 87) - in the upper half of the Billboard Top 200. PBS aired Il Divo's "Live At The Greek Theatre" as a stand-alone special as part of its holiday programming during the month of December.
While the fourth Il Divo album, 2005's The Christmas Collection, was ineligible for the Top 200 (a holiday release may only chart during its first season of release unless modified in some way and given a new UPC code), The Christmas Collection reached No 1 on the Billboard Top Pop Catalog chart and No 1 on the SoundScan Classical Catalog sales chart during the holidays.
During December, Il Divo held down three of the Top 5 spots on the Classical Crossover Chart with Siempre (No 1), Il Divo (No 4), and Ancora (No 5), each of which has reached No 1 on that chart. (Il Divo, the group's 2005 debut, has spent 89 weeks on the Classical Crossover Chart while Ancora has spent 50 weeks on that chart.)
Il Divo's additional U.S. television appearances included a performance of "O Holy Night" on "The Today Show" on Christmas Day, "The Young & the Restless" (December 29), and an appearance on "Wheel of Fortune" on January 4. Il Divo celebrated the close of 2006 with a special performance on the Fox Network's "New Year's Eve Live" broadcast.
Released in the United States and Canada on November 21 (with an international release date of November 27), Siempre has already achieved seven international No 1 slots (Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Thailand, Singapore, Korea, Hong Kong); four No 2's (UK, Canada, Australia, Venezuela); four No 3's (New Zealand, Netherlands, Ireland, Portugal); and 25 Top 10's. The album has already been honored with 29 gold and platinum awards around the world.
Il Divo held on to the No 1 and No 2 spots in Canada for two consecutive weeks - an unprecedented feat in the history of Canadian SoundScan - with The Christmas Collection and Siempre (in its third week at No 3). Siempre sold more than 166,000 copies its first week in the UK, the highest first week's UK sales in Il Divo's history.
In Australia, where Il Divo recently sold-out the Sydney Entertainment Centre less than a day after tickets went on-sale, Siempre immediately shot up to double platinum status with the group's Live at the Greek Theatre DVD having achieved 4x platinum.
With the burgeoning international success of Siempre, Il Divo has solidified its reputation as the most phenomenal worldwide musical break-out story of the past two years, selling more than 15.5 million albums and 1 million DVDs across the planet. Conquering the hearts of fans and the charts of nations, the group has garnered 133 gold and platinum awards and 34 No 1's around the world.
Siempre caps off an amazing year for Il Divo. 2006 opened with the group's Ancora album debuting at No 1 on the Billboard Top 200 the last week of January. Il Divo performed at consistently sold-out concerts during a six- month-long world tour and appeared as the unprecedented special guest artists during an historic North American tour with Barbra Streisand. The group performed the 2006 FIFA World Cup official song, "Time of Our Lives," at the World Cup kick-off match and during the closing ceremonies.
Il Divo will embark on the group's World Tour 2007 beginning in January with six month's worth of concerts scheduled for Southeast Asia, Japan, Australia, South Africa, Canada, South America, the UK and Europe. Details on Il Divo's World Tour 2007 at http://www.ildivo.com/worldtour.
Il Divo was formed in late 2003 under the aegis of the iconic "American Idol" judge Simon Cowell, who, after conducting a two-year international talent search, discovered David Miller (USA - tenor), Sebastien Izambard (France - pop singer), Urs Buhler (Switzerland - tenor) and Carlos Marin (Spain - baritone), a virtuosic vocal quartet who combined an astounding musical mastery with smoldering sex appeal.