Il Divo is a multinational vocal quartet of male singers who are internationally known through their numerous television and concert appearances and their chart-topping recordings. Their mixed repertory of classical and popular fare clearly places them in the crossover genre, and their global popularity makes them a formidable alternative to the Three Tenors, the Three Irish Tenors, or other such male vocal groups. The quartet consists of three tenors — American David Miller, Swiss Urs Bühler, and Frenchman Sébastien Izambard — and a baritone, Spanish opera singer Carlos Marín. Il Divo have appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show, Live with Regis and Kelly, American Idol, and other major television shows in Europe, and have performed in concert with Barbra Streisand and Toni Braxton and at major sporting and charity events.
Il Divo was formed in December 2003 by television star and music impresario Simon Cowell after he conducted a worldwide search from 2001-2003. He signed the four to his label, Syco Music, whose CDs, DVDs, and videos have been released by the Sony label. Three of the members of the group — Miller, Bühler, and Marín — are conservatory-trained classical singers and instrumentalists, while Izambard, a pianist, guitarist, and composer, has a largely pop-oriented background.
Il Divo (which means divine male in Italian) launched its career with a heavy schedule of concerts in 2004 and with its first recording, the eponymously titled Il Divo. The CD reached No. 1 on several charts and helped make the group an international sensation. In 2005 Il Divo appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and the following year performed in 20 concerts with Barbra Streisand on her nearly $100-million-grossing North American tour.
During this time the group also made three more CDs — Ancora (2005), The Christmas Collection (2005), and Voices (2006) — as well as videos and DVDs drawn from concerts. Once again, the recordings sold well, not least because of the varied choice of repertory (hymns, popular songs, and folk and traditional songs), colorful arrangements, and multiple languages (the trio sings in English, French, Spanish, Italian, and Latin).
In 2006 Il Divo performed twice with Toni Braxton at the FIFA (soccer) World Cup tournament in Germany during halftime ceremonies, singing the event's official song, "The Time of Our Lives." Among Il Divo's recordings is the 2008 Sony CD The Promise, which contains such numbers as "Amazing Grace" and "The Power of Love."