Babs fans, can you hear me? Two-time Oscar winner Barbra Streisand announced Wednesday that her official autobiography is finally getting a release date.
The “A Star Is Born” singer and “Funny Girl” star will publish “My Name Is Barbra” on Nov. 7, she said Wednesday in an announcement on social media revealing the book’s cover — featuring her iconic 1967 portrait by late photojournalist Steve Schapiro. The memoir’s title calls back to the showbiz legend’s first TV special, an Emmy Award-winning program that featured a medley of her hit songs “People,” “Happy Days Are Here Again” and “My Man.”
Penguin Random House’s Viking imprint will publish the 80-year-old superstar’s long-gestating project. The 1,040-page book is being billed as a “frank, funny, opinionated and charming” account of her life befitting the legendary EGOT winner’s luminous and lengthy career.
“Barbra Streisand is by any account a living legend, a woman who in a career spanning six decades has excelled in every area of entertainment,” Penguin Random House said on its website, adding, “In ‘My Name Is Barbra,’ she tells her own story about her life and extraordinary career, from growing up in Brooklyn to her first star-making appearances in New York nightclubs to her breakout performance in Funny Girl (musical and film) to the long string of successes in every medium in the years that followed.”
“The book is, like Barbra herself, frank, funny, opinionated, and charming. She recounts her early struggles to become an actress, eventually turning to singing to earn a living; the recording of some of her acclaimed albums; the years of effort involved in making ‘Yentl’; her direction of ‘The Prince of Tides’; her friendships with figures ranging from Marlon Brando to Madeleine Albright; her political advocacy; and the fulfillment she’s found in her marriage to James Brolin.”
Streisand received 10 Grammy Awards, including the lifetime achievement and the legend awards in the ’90s. She made history with her 1983 fllm “Yentl,” becoming the first woman to write, produce, direct and star in a major motion picture. Streisand won her Oscars for acting in “Funny Girl” (1968) and for writing the “Evergreen” theme song for the 1976 version of “A Star Is Born.” She also earned two more Emmy Awards for her TV specials “Barbra: The Concert” (1994) and “Timeless: Live in Concert” (2001). She won a special Tony Award in 1980 after being nominated twice before for her roles in “I Can Get It for You Wholesale” and the stage version of “Funny Girl.”
Several unauthorized biographies about the star have been published but Streisand, who is fiercely protective of her image, never gave them her stamp of approval.
Notably, she denied several interview requests for Shaun Considine’s 1985 book “Barbra Streisand: The Woman, the Myth, the Music,” a controversial account of her life and her career that ultimately was said to have made her “livid.” “The Mirror Has Two Faces” star tried to have that book killed and several of her celebrity friends — Jane Fonda, Nora Ephron and Jackson Pollock — either denied speaking to the late journalist or said they were misquoted.
Streisand first announced the memoir in 2015 saying that she had a deal with Viking for her life story and that she planned to publish a book in 2017. Streisand told the Associated Press that she had been contemplating writing her memoir since at least 2009 when she began writing down thoughts and wondering whether she wanted to “relive” her life. She also said that she committed herself more strongly in recent years, saying she was determined to clear up various myths.
In 2010, Viking published the artist’s “My Passion for Design,” an illustrated book featuring Streisand’s oceanfront compound in Malibu.
In 2021, Streisand said on “The Tonight Show” that Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis asked her to write a memoir in the early 1980s when the former first lady was an editor at Doubleday.