With one of the most powerful voices in pop, Ariana Grande delivers hit after hit. She’s a cultural icon whose career began on Nickelodeon, but where did she grow up?
Though Ariana Grande’s parents originally lived in New York, they relocated to Florida shortly before her birth and she grew up in Boca Raton, Florida. Ariana attended school in Florida, but was tutored whilst performing on Broadway, in the musical ‘13’.
Read on to learn more about Ariana’s childhood and her family relationships.
Growing Up In Florida
Ariana was born on June 26, 1993 to Edward Butera, the owner of a successful graphic design firm, and Joan Grande, who runs a communications company. The pair married in 1992 and Ariana grew up attending the day-care area at her mother’s work.
The couple had moved to Florida whilst Joan was pregnant with Ariana, along with Ariana’s best friend and half-brother, Frankie Grande, who was born to Ariana’s mother and a previous partner, a pulmonologist named Victor Marchione, in 1983.
Despite being known for her ‘cutesy’ persona, Ariana told Billboard that she was the quirkiest of kids: “For my fifth birthday party we had a Jaws theme and all my friends left crying. I mean, I still am that way. But when I was little it was more concerning. There was a stage, when I was 3 or 4, where my mom thought I might grow up to be a serial killer.”
Growing up in Florida, Ariana attended Pine Crest School and North Broward Preparatory School, but her burgeoning theatre career beckoned. After being cast in the Broadway musical ‘13’ aged 15, she was forced to get to grips with distance learning and studied with tutors whilst in New York.
Though Grande is one of the world’s biggest stars, she’s candid about the toll of spending her early years in the limelight, coupled with the divorce of her parents when she was around nine or ten.
Speaking to Elle, Ariana divulged that she’s been in therapy since around the time of their split, adding “I’ve also spent the past handful of years growing up under very extraordinary circumstances”.
One thing Ariana recalls as being a constant comfort throughout her life is family. Reminiscing on her early childhood, Ariana remembered a close and loving family, recalling “my brother and my mom and my grandparents were always there,” as well as her Dad, prior to the split.
Though Ariana and her father became distant following her parents’ divorce, they’ve since reconciled their differences and are open in their love for one another over social media.
She told Seventeen Magazine, “So much of me comes from my father, and for so long, I didn’t like that about myself. I had to accept that it’s OK not to get along with somebody and still love them.”
The family would take regular trips to Disney World and Ariana’s brother told Attitude Magazine that there was “always a performance going on in our house”. Hardly surprising, given that Frankie is a singer, actor and successful performer in his own right.
The pair are open in their appreciation for one another, and he insisted in an interview “we’re a very supportive family and we have each other’s backs above anything else”.
The family girl has always had a super close relationship with her grandparents, who have had the ultimate confidence in her career. Though her grandfather passed away in 2014, she remembers him as having had a massive influence on her childhood: “He was like, ‘you’re a star, I know in my heart you’re going to make this family so proud. You’re a blessing.’”
From child star to cultural icon, Ariana has always been grateful for the strength of family.
Watch Ariana’s self-love anthem ‘Thank U, Next’ in the YouTube video below.