Biography of Enrique Iglesias
Enrique Iglesias is one of the most famous Spanish-language performers in the world, a multiple Grammy and American Music Awards winner, the dream of millions of women. All of his discs have repeatedly become gold and platinum and scattered in record numbers. In terms of popularity, Enrique is not inferior to his legendary father, Julio Iglesias, who is considered the most commercially successful Spanish-speaking singer in the world.
Pictured: Enrique Iglesias
Childhood and youth
Enrique Miguel Iglesias Preisler was born on May 8, 1975 in Madrid, Spain. Father is a planetary star, the legendary Spanish singer Julio Iglesias. Mother, Isabel Preisler, is a Filipino-born former model who made a name for herself in television journalism.
Enrique Iglesias as a child
Their marriage could not be called happy – Julio’s long tours, his constant betrayals and indifferent attitude towards children destroyed the family. Parents divorced when Enrique was barely three years old. The father left for Miami, and the mother was left with three children in her arms (Enirke has a sister, Maria, and a brother, Julio). Earning a living, she could not pay enough attention to them, so the nanny Maria Olivares, whom Enrique remembers with great warmth, entered the family.
Enrique Iglesias with his mother, brother and sister
In 1985, events took place that can only be called a thriller. Basque terrorists kidnapped the father of Julio Iglesias and demanded a ransom of two million dollars for him, and in case of refusal they threatened his ex-wife and children with death. The police managed to free the grandfather from the clutches of the bandits, but it was dangerous to stay in Madrid, and the singer moved his sons to America. 9-year-old Enrique found himself in Miami, where his life changed dramatically.
Enrique Iglesias with his father and mother
The boy was accompanied everywhere by guards, he could no longer run freely through the streets and play his favorite football. His father enrolled him in the prestigious Gulliver Preparatory School for celebrity children, where Erica felt out of place. Classmates came to school in luxurious limousines and in every possible way made it clear that he was not their berry. There was no need to wait for attention and support from his father – the singer had another family in which small children were growing up. In addition, Enrique was never his favorite – Julio always singled out his eldest son, to whom he gave his name.
Enrique practically did not see his father, only the nanny Elvira, who replaced his mother, was nearby. Coming from school, he locked himself in his room, listened to music, wrote poetry and kept a diary, to which he trusted his thoughts. The young man wanted to become a singer, but his father did not believe in his talent and pinned all his hopes on his eldest son. Therefore, Enrique had no choice but to continue his education at the Faculty of Finance of the local university, which his father insisted on, after graduating from school.
But Enrique was in no hurry to part with his dream – all his free hours he composed new songs and beat the thresholds of record companies, inviting them to listen to his material. So that he would not be associated with the famous father, the young man took the pseudonym Martinez, under which he introduced himself to the producers.
Enrique Iglesias in his youth
Receiving refusal after refusal, Enrique began to gradually lose faith in his strength. He became addicted to drinking and in the evenings began to go to bars, where he took his soul over a glass of whiskey. After drinking, he liked to hum his songs under his breath, and sometimes he could climb onto the stage and arrange an uninvited concert. At one of these moments, Guillermo Santiso, the producer and founder of the Spanish-language label Fonovisa Records, noticed him and invited him to his studio. Enrique seized on this opportunity like a saving straw – he left the hated university, signed a contract with a label and left for Canada, where he began work on his debut album.
In the fall of 1995, the singer’s first collection entitled “Enrique Iglesias” was released, dedicated to the nanny Elvira. The record sold 6.5 million copies and was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1997 as the best Latin American pop album. And the song Por Amarte became the main soundtrack of the popular Mexican telenovela Marisol.
Enrique Iglesias in 1995
In January 1997 Enrique released his second album “Vivir” and went on a world tour in which he gave 78 concerts in sixteen countries. In the same year, he was nominated for the American Music Awards, which his father also claimed at the same time.
Enrique Iglesias in his youth
Before the ceremony, Julio said that if the award goes to his son, he defiantly leaves the hall. In order not to spoil the already strained relationship with his father, Enrique voluntarily refused the award. Julio Iglesias received his award, but even in a thank-you speech he could not resist, so as not to let go of a few hairpins to his son. Enrique silently swallowed the insult, not responding to his father’s attack, and when he went on stage and sang the song “Lluvia Cae”, the hall literally exploded with applause.
Whenever I explain my relationship with my father, many people don’t understand me. I don’t feel like I should sit across from my father and beg his forgiveness, or he should beg my forgiveness. We have nothing to regret. I love him, respect and understand him <...> He is a big star and has sold many albums and concert tickets all over the world. This is my goal, my point of reference for comparison. I need to reach the same level or even higher.
Enrique became the new idol of the younger generation, a sex symbol and trendsetter for Latin American music. In the late 90s, his albums broke sales records and scattered in millions of copies, and songs were heard in all corners of the globe. The single “Bailamos” was featured on the soundtrack of the western Will Smith-starring Wild Wild West, and the duet with Whitney Houston “Could I Have This Kiss Forever” (2000) became a number one hit in many countries around the world, including Russia.
A week before the events of September 11, the romantic ballad “Hero” was released, which the singer subsequently performed at a concert in memory of those killed in this terrorist attack. It became the unspoken anthem of the tragedy that claimed the lives of three thousand people.
In October of the same year, the singer released another collection, Escape, which is still considered the best of his career. Its circulation was 10 million copies. In support of the album, Enrique went on a world tour, during which he gave his first concert in Moscow, especially for which he learned the song “Dark Eyes” in Russian.
In 2003, the father and son of Iglesias released an album at the same time: Enrique’s was the seventh in a row (he called it “Seven”), and Julio’s was the seventy-seventh. And this time the victory turned out to be on the side of the father – critics recognized the record as the best in their entire career, but the son’s work was rated only for C grade.
But this failure could no longer knock Enrique off the intended path – he temporarily postponed work in the studio and, in order to gain new impressions, organized the largest tour of his life, even reaching South Africa.
Three years later, Iglesias returned to studio work and delighted fans with four hits at once. The song “Can You Hear Me” became the official anthem of UEFA 2008 – the singer performed it at Vienna’s Ernst Happel Stadium during the closing ceremony of the championship.
Another surge in popularity occurred in 2014, when Iglesias recorded the song “Bailando”, the video for which gained 800 million views in a week. It was followed by the equally successful composition “El Perdedor” from the bilingual album “Sex + Love”, in support of which the singer went on a three-year tour.
Enrique Iglesias in 2018
Personal life of Enrique Iglesias
Unlike his loving father and grandfather (he became a father for the last time at the age of 90), Enrique has been faithful to one woman who gave birth to three children for twenty years. And before meeting her – Russian tennis player Anna Kournikova – he had only two high-profile novels, which is usually unusual for a star of this level.
The first “public” lover of Iglesias was the actress Sofia Vergara, whom he met in 1998 on the set of a television program. Enrique planned to marry a sultry Colombian beauty, but for unknown reasons the couple broke up, although they continue to maintain friendly relations.
Enrique Iglesias and Sofia Vergara
In 2000, at one of the ceremonies, he met actress Jennifer Love Hewitt, with whom he soon began a romantic relationship. After Jen starred in the video for the song “Hero”, the fans no longer doubted the imminent wedding, but this relationship ended in nothing.
With Jennifer Love Hewitt
At the end of 2001, Iglesias began filming a video for the song “Escape”. For the main female role, it was decided to invite tennis player Anna Kournikova, a sexy blonde, whom Enrique had long wanted to meet. Already on the set, sparks flew between the young people, and the “hot” scenes looked very convincing. True, there is a version that at first the singer refused to kiss Anna, noticing herpes on her lip, but it seems that these are just speculations of journalists. Enrique himself was pleased with the result and admitted after filming that “you don’t have to be a good actor kissing Kournikova.”
In 2002, the lovers appeared together at the MTV Video Music Awards and became the heroes of the evening. Their romance immediately became the number one topic of discussion – journalists closely followed the development of the relationship of the star couple, wondering how long they would stay together. Before meeting Enrique, Anna had affairs with famous athletes Pavel Bure and Sergei Fedorov, and Iglesias was attacked daily by hundreds of fans ready to fall at his feet. But the couple did not give rise to gossip and tried not to advertise their personal lives too much. They periodically appeared at social events, but did not give any comments about future plans.
Enrique Iglesias and Anna Kournikova in their youth
In 2004, a ring with a huge diamond shone on Anna’s finger. Everyone was waiting for the news of the imminent wedding, but the lovers made it clear that official marriage was not important for them, because they were already so good together. Kournikova left big sport and practically disappeared from sight. Only occasionally did information about the star couple appear in the press, from which it became clear that they were still together.
In December 2016, the media reported sensational news – the couple had twins Nicholas and Lucy. Many doubted that Anna herself endured and gave birth to babies, because no one saw her pregnant. The tennis player had to post a photo on the Web, where her rounded tummy is visible. Only then did the public calm down and began to congratulate the newly-made parents.
The eldest children of Enrique Iglesias – twins Nicholas and Lucy
In 2019, Kournikova’s Instagram followers noticed that Anna started following Kournikova Iglesias. And in December of the same year, the tennis player got into the lenses of the paparazzi with a noticeably rounded belly again. I didn’t have to keep the intrigue for a long time – in mid-February 2023, Enrique’s brother, Julio, announced that he had another niece. A couple of days after this insider, photos of a couple with a newborn daughter in their arms appeared on the network. The girl was born on January 30, they called her the Russian name Masha.
Enrique attended the birth of his wife
Iglesias spends a lot of time with children and quite often uploads videos that show that he is absolutely happy. The couple still lives quite secluded, preferring yacht trips or quiet family evenings surrounded by children and beloved pets to secular parties.
Enrique Iglesias now
Recently, Iglesias in his work has increasingly resorted to collaborations with other artists, which, in his opinion, expand the creative range and bring new energy to his songs. An example is the composition “SUBEME LA RADIO”, recorded together with Descemer Bueno and Zion & Lennox. The video sequence for this single was filmed in Cuba, whose inhabitants have always inspired the singer with their friendliness, optimism and cheerfulness.
In 2018, a video was released for the song “ElBaño”, recorded with Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny. It stars Eric Roberts as a guest star. In 2023, Enrique released a joint track with another Puerto Rican rapper, Emanuel Santiago, better known as Anuel AA, and also recorded several songs with rapper Pitbull and even went on a joint tour with him.