Ariana Grande-Butera (born June 26, 1993), known professionally as Ariana Grande is an American singer and actress. She began her career in the Broadway musical 13, before landing the role of Cat Valentine on the Nickelodeon television series Victorious in 2009. The show ended after four seasons, and Grande starred on the spinoff, Sam & Cat, which ended in 2014. She has also appeared in other theatre, television and film roles, and has lent her voice to animated television and films.
Grande's music career began with the soundtrack Music from Victorious (2011). She signed a recording contract with Republic Records and released her debut studio album, Yours Truly in 2013, which debuted at No. 1 on the US Billboard 200. The album's lead single, "The Way", debuted in the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100, with critics comparing her wide vocal range to Mariah Carey's range.
Grande's accolades include three American Music Awards, the Music Business Association's Breakthrough Artist of the Year, an MTV Video Music Award, three MTV Europe Music Awards and four Grammy Award nominations. All three of her albums have been certified platinum or better by the RIAA. In 2016, Time named Grande one of the 100 most influential people in the world on the annual Time 100 list. Grande has a large following on social media, including the 4th most followed Instagram account.
Grande's music is generally pop and R&B, and it has elements of funk, dance and hip hop. Grande has cited Cuban-American star Gloria Estefan as the person who inspired her to pursue a career in the music industry, after Estefan complimented a performance she saw Grande give on a cruise ship when she was eight years old. Grande cites Whitney Houston as a major influence on her career, stating that Houston has inspired her "endlessly" since she was a child.