Monday, April 16, 2012

The Barbra Streisand Timeline 1942-1959

APRIL 24, 1942

Barbara Joan, the daughter of Diana Rosen and Emanuel Streisand is born at the Jewish Hospital in Brooklyn, New York.

JULY 1, 1943
Emanuel Streisand takes a summer job in the Catskill Mountains, bringing his family with him. Without warning, 35-year-old Manny becomes ill and dies. For years, his children believe he had died from a cerebral hemorrhage, but the true cause of death was respiratory failure induced by an injection of morphine to halt an epileptic seizure. Diana Streisand, overcome with grief, takes Sheldon and 15-month-old Barbara and moves into her parents' home on 365 Pulaski Street in Williamsburg Brooklyn.

Barbara goes to school at the Yeshiva of Brooklyn. During the summer, she is sent to health camp. On visiting day, her mother brings Louis Kind. Also: Barbara makes her first appearance on stage as a singer at a P.T.A. meeting. Her best friends are Rosalyn Arenstein and Joanne Micelli.

DECEMBER 23, 1950
Louis Kind marries Diana Streisand; she's nearly nine months pregnant at the time.

JANUARY 9, 1951
Rosiland Kind, Barbara's younger sister, is born in Brooklyn. 

MAY 3, 1955
The family moves to Vanderveer Estates, 3102 Newkirk Avenue in Brooklyn. Barbara's bed is a pull-out sofa in the living room. Barbara develops tinnitus, a ringing in her ears which never stops. Also: Barbara takes ballet lessons until her mother makes her stop because Diana's afraid she'll break her legs.

MAY 6, 1955
Louis Kind and Diana Streisand Kind separate. Barbara's best friend is Irving Borokow. Irving's mother, Toby, is like a second mother to Barbara, knitting a jacket for Barbara's hot-water bottle doll.

MAY 7, 1955
Barbara goes to work babysitting for the children of Jimmy and Muriel Choy, her upstairs neighbors. Also: After two years of sneaking up on the roof -- often with her cousin Lowell -- Barbara quits cigarette smoking.

DECEMBER 29, 1955
At the Nola Recording Studio, Barbara and her mother cut a four-record demo, two songs each. Barbara sings "You'll Never Know" and "Zing! Went The Strings Of My Heart."

1955 - 1958
Barbara goes to work as a cashier at Choy's Orient, the Chinese restaurant owned by the Choys. Muriel Choy teaches Barbara about "the facts of life."

APRIL 1, 1956
Barbara goes to see her first Broadway play -- "The Diary of Anne Frank." She believes she could play the role and it fuels her determination to become an actress.

Barbara lies about her age to gets accepted as a summer stock apprentice at the Malden Bridge Playhouse in New York. Despite her mother's objections, Barbara convinces her to let her go away from the summer.

FALL 1957
Barbara volunteers at the Cherry Lane Theater in Greenwich Village. Barbara get a scholarship to study acting with Alan Miller; in exchange for the lessons, Barbara babysits Alan and Anita's children. Also: At Erasmus Hall High School, Barbara is an honors student. She joins the Choral Club. Neil Diamond is also in the chorus, but they don't remember meeting at the time.

Barbara works summer stock at the Clinton Theatre, appearing in "The Boyfriend," "A Hatful of Rain" (with Warren Beatty), and "Tobacco Road."

FALL 1958
Barbara goes regularly to the New York Public Library to learn about Russian literature and classical theater and music. She also meets Cis Corman, a young aspiring actress who's older than Barbara. They become life-long friends. Also: At Erasmus Hall, Barbara befriends a 15-year-old outsider named Bobby Fischer who later becomes a world-class chess champion.

JANUARY 1, 1959
Barbara Streisand graduates from Erasmus Hall High with a 93 average and a medal in Spanish. Also: At the Garret Theatre in New York City, she appears in a workshop with Joan Rivers, called "Driftwood."

Barbara gets a job as a switchboard operator, saving money to move to Manhattan. Also: Using the pseudonym Angelina Scarangella, she studies with acting coach Eli Rill. She also attends workshops at Herbert Bergdorf, Curt Conway, and the Actor's Studio. She makes friends with Dustin Hoffman, another struggling actor.

She works summer stock at the Cecilwood Theatre. When she returns, Barbara moves out of Brooklyn, sharing an apartment on 48th Street with another girl.

FALL 1959
Streisand makes the rounds of Broadway producers, but is completely turned off by the experience.

Barbara works as an usherette at the Lunt-Fontanne Theater on Broadway, where "The Sound Of Music" is playing. She auditions for the role of Leisel, but is turned down. But casting agent Eddie Blum likes her voice that he brings in pianist Peter Daniels to hear her.

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