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September 3, 2014

Dont Rain On My Parade

'Glee' and the Barbra Streisand Connection

by Allison Waldman, posted Apr 29th 2010 2:02PM
barbra_streisand_high_school_yearbookEver since 'Glee' began, there's been a thread running through it that's always reminded me of Barbra Streisand. In last Tuesday's episode, the thread was more like a rope, as four characters did the medley "One Less Bell/A House Is Not A Home," just like Streisand did in the 1971 Burt Bacharach TV special.

Apparently, others have picked up on this connection, too. This review in New York magazine suggested that the 'Glee' should really do a Barbra Streisand episode -- like the Madonna show -- because Barbra is 'the patron saint' of 'Glee' kids.

Whether they do an all-Streisand show or not, the writer made a great point about how the kids in New Directions are more akin to Brooklyn Barbra than almost any other performer. Before she graduated Erasmus Hall High School in 1959, Barbra Streisand was in glee club. (So was Neil Diamond!) But Streisand wasn't the star of Choral Club. The director, Mr. De Pietto, preferred blonde soprano,Trudy Wallace, and gave her all the solos. Streisand was put in the back, in the alto section.

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Lea Michele reflects on singing Streisand

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 21st 2009 12:38PM
lea_michele_gleeI have to admit that from the first time I saw Glee, I loved Lea Michele. The character of Rachel Berry, that "determined to be a star and I don't care who knows it" attitude appealed to me. I recognized that feeling, too, because I remember watching Barbra Streisand in Funny Girl in the movies and having the same feeling of identification. When Streisand finished singing "I'm the Greatest Star" as Fanny Brice, I was convinced. Well, Lea feels it, too. She's a major Streisand fan and she loved singing a Barbra song on Glee.

Every time Lea Michele has had a chance to go diva -- like "Maybe This Time" and "Defying Gravity" -- she's displayed that Streisandesque musical power.

So when the winter finale had the New Directions show choir at sectionals and Rachel stepped up to sing "Don't Rain on My Parade," I was on the edge of my seat. I wondered if Lea would pull it off. I say that because it's a very hard song to do, everything is on the offbeat and it's a driving melody that requires a big voice and a lot of stamina.

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Review: Glee - Sectionals (winter finale)

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 10th 2009 1:00AM
glee_jane_lynch_michael_morrison(S01E13) I would like to say that Glee saved the best for last, but I can't. You see, this wasn't the end. "Sectionals" wasn't the end of the season at all. What it was, in fact, was a great intermission in the middle of a terrific musical. And since it was just the halfway point, and since Glee has a brilliant way of honoring Broadway and musicals and great entertainment, there were songs in this episode that epitomized that spirit.

Oh, and if you're wondering if the dramatic elements in the show were addressed, they were. But if you think it was all tied up in a pretty bow, think again. There was so much great stuff in this show that my head is spinning. I'll do my best to sort it out. To see if I succeeded, and to share the joy of Glee, read on.

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