Yotuel Omar Manzanarez Romero (born October 6, 1976) is an singer, actor and musician current lead singer and co-writer of the 2003 Latin Grammy Award winner Platinum album selling rap group Orishas. Among other recordings, Emigrante won the 2003 Latin Grammy Award for Best Rap/Hip-Hop Album. This same album was also nominated for the 2003 Grammy Award for Best Latin Rock/Alternative Album.
Yotuel was born in Havana, Cuba. His name is a combination of three Spanish pronouns yo, tú and él (I, you, and he). His parents could not agree on a name so they decided to combine all 3 pronouns.
Since September 2003, Yotuel has been dating fellow actress and singer Beatriz Luengo. They got married on November 6, 2008. He has one son (born 2000) from a previous marriage.
From a young age his passions were sports and music. At just 5 years of age he began to play waterpolo. At 15 years of age he started the Jujitsu form of martial arts, which he practised until the age of 19. He is also Afro-Cuban.
He started performing rap music early in life. When he was 18 years old he got together with his friend Hiram Riveri (aka Ruzzo) and Joel Pando and all three started a rap group called Amenaza (Menace). Having any success as a rap artist in Cuba proved difficult so he also started acting in theatre and television and doing some modelling work.,
During the year 1996 Liván Nuñez, a Cuban singer who lived in France, visited Cuba and told the struggling Amenaza group about his interest in recording some songs with them.,
In 1997 they won the first prize in the 3rd edition of the underground Cuban Rap Music Awards, later on that year they would record a demo produced by X Alfonso This first group had a very good acceptance and a lot of radio play in Cuba and some national television appearances in Cuba. From all this found fame they meet Petra Morales a representative of a French non-profit organization called ADHESIF, she liked their work so she arranged for them to travel to France from Cuba to do a cultural exchange program and to promote them outside Cuba.
While in France very few things were being done regarding the group, they had very few events and shows planned and it seemed that they did not agree with the same special requirements they had for them, one thing led to another and the band ended up homeless in the streets of Paris for about a month, they would eat at friends homes and back to sleeping in the Paris Métro.
There was already a strong rap music scene in Paris and they took advantage of this, they got together with Livan and the producer Niko Noki introduced them to another singer named Roldan at a club called Cupol and from that moment the group Orishas was born. Right away they started writing lyrics and musical themes for the demo that would later become their first album titled A Lo Cubano.
Since then Yotuel has not stopped working. He has worked on three television series La Casa de los Lios and Cuando Yo Sea Grande (Peruvian TV) and in Spain Un Paso Adelante. Movies include the features Color Habana and Perfecto Amor Equivocado, he is currently filming Chico Nuevo en la Ciudad . He has also starred in ad campaigns for Ducados and Havana Club.
Besides being a singer, actor and a model, Yotuel has also done work as a record producer on two songs El rey de la pachanga and Distinto from the recordings Emigrante and El Kilo respectively.
Perfecto Amor Equivocado (2004) aka Love by Mistake (USA) as Leoncio
Un Paso Adelante (2002-2005) TV Series (2003-2004) as Pavel