Barbra Joan Streisand (1942-) is the best selling female musician of all time. Though she had a very rough life in her early years, she has become one of the brightest stars in recording history. Streisand has built a strong reputation on her singing and acting talents. For a superstar, Streisand is not particularly attractive and this has been somewhat of a hindrance for her. John Simon has said that she is "like a cross between an aardvark and an albino rat surmounted by a platinum-coated horse bun".

Barbra was born on April 24, 1942 in Brooklyn, New York to parents Manny and Diana Streisand. In 1943, Manny Streisand passed away. He had been in a car accident 13 years prior to this and had suffered massive epileptic seizures ever since. Manny's final seizure was so terrible that he had passed out after it was done, and later he was pronounced dead. This was a terrible emotional blow to Diana, who had to move in with her parents and get a job to take care of Barbra and her older brother, Sheldon.

Barbra discovered her singing talents even before she hit age two. She became fascinated with the performing arts after watching television as a young child. Meanwhile, her mother's remarriage to an abusive husband would add another tragic chapter to Barbra's childhood. Her mother tried to keep her from singing, because Barbra was not very pretty and her mother thought her dreams would be shattered.

Barbra attempted to join her high school choral club. Though she was an excellent student who would eventually graduate fourth in her class of 1300, her focus was always on singing. She was rejected after both of her auditions for the choral club, however.

Barbra was undaunted by her rejection from the choral club and began to look elsewhere. She eventually obtained an internship at the Cherry Lane Theater. While here, she met an acting coach who thought she had potential. He worked with her and got her an acting job in the play "Driftwood", which she starred in along with Joan Rivers. This was a very small production, but Barbra was enthusiastic about the opportunity nevertheless. Soon after "Driftwood", she graduated from high school. She had to make a choice: she could listen to her mother and go to college on a scholarship, or she could follow her dream. Barbra chose the latter, and never regretted it.

In 1962, Barbra got her first Broadway role in "I Can Get It For You Wholesale." In 1963, Barbra married actor Elliot Gould. They would have a son, Jason, in 1966. Also in 1963, Streisand would release her first album, The Barbra Streisand Album, which topped the charts. Streisand's career was growing rapidly. She released two more albums and then returned to Broadway to star in "Funny Girl", which would eventually reach the silver screen. The movie adaptation would win Streisand an Academy Award.

Streisand would continue recording, acting, and even directing. But she quit doing live performances very early in her career. She divorced Elliot Gould in 1971. All of her recordings and acting endeavors were successful. In 1994, she decided to return to live performances. Tickets to her shows were very hard to obtain, not to mention expensive. Barbra married James Brolin in 1998. Her popularity continues to grow even after such a long career.

A list of albums in alphabetical order, through 2001, from http://www.sing365.com/:

  • A Love Like Ours
  • And Other Instruments
  • Back To Broadway
  • Barbra Joan Streisand
  • Barbra Streisand Album
  • Barbra-The Concert
  • Broadway Album
  • Butterfly
  • Christmas Album
  • Classical Barbra
  • Collection Greatest Hits
  • Color Me Barbra
  • Concert Highlights
  • Emotion
  • Greatest Hits
  • Greatest Hits Vol 2
  • Guilty
  • Happening In Central Park
  • Higher Ground
  • Je M'appelle Barbra
  • Just For The Record
  • Just For The Record Highlights
  • Lazy Afternoon
  • Live Concert At The Forum
  • Memories
  • My Name Is Barbra
  • My Name Is Barbra Two
  • On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
  • One Voice
  • People
  • Pins and Needles
  • Second Barbra Streisand Album
  • Simply Streisand
  • Sing-A-Long-Vol. 1
  • Sing-A-Long-Vol. 2
  • Sing-A-Long-Vol. 3
  • Songbird
  • Star Is Born
  • Stoney End
  • Streisand Superman
  • Third Album
  • Till I Loved You
  • Way We Were
  • Wet
  • What About Today?

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