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Thursday, 27 May 2010

BookExpo New York Review.

From Broadwayworld.com:

Barbra Streisand, the multi-gifted artist added another feather to her hat on May 25th by appearing in a casual setting at this year's BookExpo America (BEA) at the Opening Night Keynote Reception. This was the most anticipated keynote speaking event that the BookExpo experienced since Bill Clinton did the same event in 2004. People lined up a day early to secure tickets to be sure that they would see Barbra, and they did - in a new light and interviewed by the equally well known in popular culture - Gayle King, who is now a New Yorker.

It was a beautifully done, simply lit and executed event and the opening speech that brought on Ms. King and Ms. Streisand was given by Clare Ferraro, the president of Viking Penguin, Plume and Studio Books imprints of Penguin Putnam Publishing. It started out with a bang as Gayle and Barbra got into 'girl talk' immediately about color, clothing and things like that, and the laughs came tumbling down.

Gayle King expressed being in awe of Streisand and jumping at the opportunity to sit down with her. It was clear that she had read the galley of the book, cover to cover, in secret, on a plane coming from Los Angeles - while trying not to let anyone see over her shoulder.

The 288-page, photo filled book comes out on November 16, 2010 and is a great deal currently on sale at Amazon.com for a discounted price of $37.80.

There were some great things in the conversation including a previously unrevealed fact that surprised the audience - Streisand had also taken nearly all the photos in the book. As she said, "It's my eye, it's my vision, it's the way I see it" - to which, she got huge applause. The property she lives on in Malibu was clearly explained in terms of the three houses - the main house, 'Grandma's house' and the new elegant barn as well as the millhouse. The book is called My Passion For Design, and Streisand was on her game with the word 'passion' right up front.

Any question that Gayle asked, Barbra could immediately jump on and answer in a thorough and satisfying fashion, while also being quite entertaining as she confessed about her own characteristics regarding attention to detail, which could be perceived as both blessings and curses.

It became clear that the entire audience could relate to this as well as Gayle, as she herself told us had built two houses in her lifetime. The people at Penguin set the event up beautifully and there was a reception afterwards for guests of the book company. Streisand was praised for her diligence and delivery on such a full and complicated book, for which Rick Kot served as editor.

The other reason that this book will be a spectacular thing to own, is that Streisand wrote all of the content and it's loaded with stories and descriptions, as only she can do. Gayle did a nice job of touching on her career and Streisand told some very deep emotional childhood stories that were unexpected, but very welcome and made you understand much of what she has collected over the years and how she arrived at her work ethic, as a result of events during her youth. The whole thing lasted just over an hour, but the audience clearly would have stayed for more.

This book is something that everyone should put at the top of their Christmas list and should pre-order now to guarantee getting a copy, as its unknown how many will be in the first printing. We got a glimpse of the galley on the coffee table in front of her and it looks like a fascinating book that everyone will want to own. I must add, Gayle King got a huge round of applause for saying "it's nice to have a Kindle or a Nook or an iPad, but there's nothing like holding a book in your hand..." and the room burst into applause as you can imagine, since it was, after all, a BookExpo.

The event was low-key, not starry, accessible and thoroughly enjoyed by everyone in attendance.

BarbraNews Shop + Review of 2006 Tour.

USA * Canada * UK/Europe
Click here for the European Tour Website from 2007
Click here to read our SPECIAL review of the 2006 Tour -- Excellent pictures.