Photo of Barbra Streisand Barbra Streisand

Barbra Streisand is one of the most controversial artists in decades, but even her detractors admit that her golden voice is as inimitable as it is thrilling. Born on April 24, 1942, in Brooklyn, N.Y., Streisand was stagestruck from early childhood. After winning a Greenwich Village talent contest at age 18, she enjoyed early success as a singer in nightclubs and on the Broadway stage, culminating in her Tony Award-nominated turn as Fanny Brice in "Funny Girl."

She followed that theatrical success by starring in the film version of Funny Girl (her movie debut) and shared a Best Actress Oscar with Katharine Hepburn. An unbroken string of gold albums and film successes followed, including Hello, Dolly!, The Way We Were and A Star Is Born (for which she won a Best Song Oscar).

Streisand married actor Elliot Gould in 1963; they divorced in 1971, and in 1998 she married actor James Brolin.

Barbra Streisand in Funny Girl

Funny Girl

1968 G

Director William Wyler's classic musical tells the story of legendary Ziegfeld Follies comedienne Fanny Brice (Barbra Streisand, in an Oscar-winning role), an unconventional beauty who grew up in the Jewish slums of New York dreaming of stardom. When Brice finally becomes the toast of Broadway, the resentful reaction of her husband (Omar Sharif) threatens to destroy their marriage. The film received eight Oscar nominations. Note: This version includes musical interludes.

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