Josh Groban Wows Fans at Sun City Superbowl
November 28, 2004
International phenomenon Josh Groban, received a standing ovation after he wowed audiences, young and old during his first tour on Saturday night at the Sun City Superbowl.

The South African tour has been held in support of Unite Against Hunger.

Groban will also sing at the Northgate Dome in Johannesburg on Sunday, and at Kirstenbosch Gardens in Cape Town on December 3.

Violin virtuoso, Lucia Micarelli joined Groban during the concert.

Micarelli's debut album, music from a 'Farther Room', was recently released locally, and the classically trained violinist received a warm response from the audience.

She performs with a violin in everything, from jazz combos to orchestral rock. The New York born, Hawaiian raised artist has been a violin student from the age of three and made her orchestral debut with the Honolulu symphony at the age of six.

Groban, the 22-year-old baritone's concert featured a 16-piece all-south-african string orchestra, along with 20 members from Rhema church, joined Groban for the song 'You raise Me Up'.

The tall curly-haired and classical rock singer who was born in Los Angeles, California, sang one of his favourites, 'Remember' in tribute to 9/11 victims.

He took singing lessons in the late 90s from a vocal coach who knew record producer David Foster.

Foster was setting Groban up with gigs, and in 1999, Foster asked the then-17-year-old to sing at the Grammy's rehearsal, filling in for Andrea Bocelli and dueting with Celine Dion.

Since the release of his successful 2001 debut album — called 'Josh Groban' and featuring the international hit 'To Where You Are' — Groban has become a musical phenomenon, selling over 10 million albums world-wide.

His South African sales are over 250 000 units - making him one of the biggest international artists in the country, the organisers said.

South Africa is his third biggest market after the United States and Canada.

Last year saw the release of 'Closer', his second album, which features the hit single 'You Raise Me Up', and boasts a guest artist roster led by world-class violinist Joshua Bell and the innovative French duo Deep Forest.

Groban also appeared in a string of television appearances and a recording contract, and in 2001 he released his self-titled debut album, a collection of songs in English and Italian.

That same year he appeared in a small role on the TV series 'Ally McBeal' (starring Calista Flockhart) and made frequent appearances on talk and variety shows.

He released 'Josh Groban in Concert in 2002', and his 2003 appearance on the PBS program Great Performances was a big hit, especially among fervent fans known as "Grobanites".

In 2004 Groban released his second studio album, 'Closer', and continued to pop up on TV, including an appearance at the Super Bowl half-time show eclipsed by the antics of Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson.

Groban's contemporaries in pop music include Clay Aiken and Norah Jones. The classical sensation gave an extravagant performance of his songs in English, Spanish and Italian.

Groban performed at the closing ceremony of the 2002 Winter Olympics, appeared on television, hit number One three times on the adult contemporary chart, dueted with Barbara Streisand and performed on the Oprah Winfrey Show. –Sapa