Frank James Michael Grande Marchione (born January 24, 1983), usually credited as Frankie Grande or Frankie J. Grande, is an American dancer, actor, singer, producer, television host, and YouTube personality. He is the older half-brother of singer and actress Ariana Grande.
He performed on Broadway as Franz in the musical Rock of Ages (2014–2015) and in Mamma Mia! (2007–2010) and has played roles Off-Broadway, in regional theatre productions and on tour. Grande has produced Broadway shows and both produced and appeared in cabaret acts, including his own one-man show. In 2012, Grande established a YouTube channel and has also been building a following on Twitter and Instagram. In 2014, he was a contestant on the US reality television series Big Brother 16.
Grande was a judge on the 2015 season of America's Best Dance Crew and hosted a TV special, Worst.Post.Ever: With Frankie Grande, about using social media. Since 2016, he has co-hosted Style Code Live, a live Amazon fashion and shopping show that streams on weeknights, from which he took off time to compete on the UK reality show Celebrity Big Brother 18 in mid-2016. His philanthropic work includes co-founding the non-profit arts organization "Broadway in South Africa" and work for buildOn.
Early life and careerEdit
Frankie Grande was born in New York City, the son of Victor Marchione, a physician, and Joan Grande, chief executive officer of telephone and alarm system company Hose-McCann Communications. He grew up in Englewood, New Jersey and moved with his mother to Boca Raton, Florida, at age 10, where he later attended Pine Crest School. He began performing in musicals in the fifth grade. His half-sister is singer and actress Ariana Grande, and he has a half-brother, James Marchione. Grande is openly gay. He graduated from Muhlenberg College in Pennsylvania in 2005, having triple-majored in biology, theatre and dance. He considered medical school but decided to take a year off to pursue theatre.
He began his professional performing career by 2007, when he appeared as Boots the Monkey in a national tour of Dora the Explorer Live! (Dora's Pirate Adventure) and in regional theatre productions, including the title role in George M!, Mike Costa in A Chorus Line and Lewis in Pippin, among others. Later in 2007, he joined the Broadway cast of the musical Mamma Mia!, in the ensemble and as understudy for Eddie, in which he performed for three years.
Grande has produced shows on and off Broadway, including Broadway productions of Hamlet (2009) starring Jude Law, La Bête (2010–2011) starring David Hyde Pierce, and Born Yesterday (2011) starring Jim Belushi. He also produced Brooke Shields' one-woman cabaret show in 2011. Grande has performed in cabaret acts in New York City, including at Birdland Jazz Club and 54 Below. Grande was named "Mr. Broadway" in the "Mr. Broadway 2007" charity benefit. In 2013, he starred as Bobby in a regional theatre production of the musical Crazy for You. He also presented his own show in New York, Livin' la Vida Grande, at the Laurie Beechman Theatre.