Barbra Streisand

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Streisand, Barbra,

1942–, American singer and actress, b. New York City. Streisand first gained a relatively small but select audience singing in New York City cabarets, and she received her first wide critical and public acclaim for her supporting role in the Broadway musical I Can Get It for You Wholesale (1962). She cemented her fame with her show-stopping portrayal of Fanny BriceBrice, Fanny or Fannie,
1891–1951, American comedienne, b. New York City as Fanny Borach. Brice appeared in burlesque and vaudeville from 1906.
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 in another musical, Funny Girl (1964), and won an Academy Award for her performance in the film version (1968). Noted for her strong, clear soprano voice and her dynamic presence, she has made numerous popular recordings and was the first artist to reach the top of the pop recording charts in six consecutive decades, from People in 1964 to Partners in 2014. Among her other films are Hello, Dolly (1969), The Owl and the Pussy Cat (1970), What's Up, Doc? (1972), and The Way We Were (1973). Later films include Yentl (1983), which she also wrote, directed, and produced; The Prince of Tides (1991), which she also directed; and The Mirror Has Two Faces (1996).


See biographies by J. Kimbrell (2 vol., 1989–92) and J. Spada (1995); biography of her early life by W. J. Mann (2012).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

Streisand, (Barbara Joan) Barbra

(1942–  ) film actress, singer; born in New York City. She began her career as a nightclub singer and made her Broadway debut in I Can Get It For You Wholesale (1962). With her less-than-classic face and throbbing voice, she made her first film, Funny Girl (1968), for which she won the Academy Award. She won another Oscar for the music for the song "Evergreen" in the film A Star Is Born (1977). Notorious for her demanding ways, she maintained her status as a superstar with her occasional films, recordings, and television specials, later moving on to producing and directing movies.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.
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