Friday, March 2, 2012

Barbra Streisand First Woman To Produce, Direct, Write And Star In A Major Motion Picture

Barbra Streisand First Woman To Produce, Direct, Write And Star In A Major Motion Picture, The career of Barbra Streisand has been paved with bold, creative achievements and highlighted by a series of firsts. "The Prince of Tides" was the first motion picture directed by its female star ever to receive a Best Director nomination from the Directors Guild of America as well as seven Academy Award nominations. Barbra Streisand produced the heralded drama in addition to directing and starring in it. For her very first Broadway appearance in "I Can Get It For You Wholesale," she won the New York Drama Critics Award and received a Tony nomination. For her very first record album, "The Barbra Streisand Album," she won two 1963 Grammy Awards. One of these was Album of the Year; and she was the youngest artist to have won that, at that time.

For her motion picture debut in "Funny Girl," she won the 1968 Academy Award for Best Actress, the first of two Oscars. With "Yentl," she became the first woman ever to produce, direct, write and star in a major motion picture. She was honored with an Emmy Award and the distinguished Peabody Award for her first television special, "My Name Is Barbra," in 1965. The program earned a total of five Emmys. This achievement was repeated 30 years later by her most recent musical production on television, "Barbra Streisand: The Concert," with two additional Emmy awards for Ms. Streisand among the five for the production.

She is the first female composer ever to win an Academy Award, this for her song, "Evergreen," the love theme from her hit film, "A Star Is Born." She was nominated again in 1997 as co-composer of "I Finally Found Someone," based on her love theme for her most recent film as director/producer/star, "The Mirror Has Two Faces." The "actress who sings," as Streisand once termed herself, has repeatedly been at the top of the record sales charts. Her most recent Columbia Records album, "A Love Like Ours," was quickly certified as gold and then platinum. Her prior "Higher Ground" and earlier "Back To Broadway" albums are among only a handful of recordings ever to become Number One on the sales charts in their initial week of release and to go Platinum through their first shipping orders. The previous "The Broadway Album" similarly enjoyed great praise and sales, became #1 and brought her three Grammy nominations and her eighth Grammy for Best Female Vocalist. "Higher Ground" occasioned two additional Grammy nominations for her. At home in pop, show tunes, rock and ballads; she even made a classical album, titled "Classical Barbra," which was nominated for a Grammy Award in the classical division. The dual album "Barbra Streisand: The Concert" was another recent effort in her parade of hits.

The statistics of her achievements as a recording sales leader are clearly drawn in platinum and gold. She had achieved sales unequaled by any other female recording artist. With forty-two gold albums, she is second in the all-time charts, ahead of The Beatles and the Rolling Stones, exceeded only by Elvis. Thus, she is the only artist among the top four all-time gold record sellers who was not part of the Rock & Roll revolution which has dominated the record business for four decades. Not only have forty-two of her albums become gold, but twenty-six have reached platinum status and the Recording Industry Association of America recently noted that she is the only female artist ever to have achieved thirteen multi-platinum albums, (including the soundtrack for her motion picture "A Star Is Born"), earning her eight Grammy Awards in the process.

She continues to be the highest-selling female recording artist ever, and has had number one albums in each of the last four decades. Her number one albums span a period of nearly 35 years, the greatest longevity in that statistic for any recording artist or group. A recent poll by The Reuters news agency identified her as the favorite female singer of the 20th Century and Frank Sinatra as the favorite male singer.

Recipient in 1995 of an Honorary Doctorate in Arts and Humanities from Brandeis University, Barbra Streisand is a rare honoree, perhaps the only artist to earn Oscar, Tony, Emmy, Grammy, Golden Globe, Cable Ace and Peabody Awards. Her most recent motion picture directorial effort, the TriStar Pictures release "The Mirror Has Two Faces," continued the tradition of each Streisand-directed film being accorded Academy Award nominations. The romantic comedy, her third triple effort as director/producer/star, received two Oscar nominations in 1997, and led, as well, to Lauren Bacall's winning the Supporting Actress Golden Globe.