A unique and compelling attraction of "Back To Brooklyn" is that the CD and CD/DVD combo features nine never previously performed songs by the star in concert. Ms. Streisand is the only recording artist to have accomplished #1 albums in five consecutive decades. She has achieved 51 gold albums, 30 platinum and 13 multi-platinum. Streisand has also earned eight gold DVDs, six of which have gone platinum and three of which have gone multi-platinum.
The DVD provides biographical video and still photo images of the artist's childhood and early career. The evening marked her first musical performance in her native Brooklyn since she departed at age 16 to pursue her acting career and became one of the most popular and famous musical performers of her time. Throughout the concert, Barbra reflects upon her years growing up in Brooklyn, and to mark the occasion, she commissioned special lyrics for two songs:
ACT I opens with Andrew Lloyd Webber's "As If We Never Said Goodbye," which she turns into an homage to "the Brooklyn docks, the nova lox" and other fond memories of the sights and sounds of her youth. When she triumphantly sings, "I've come home at last," the audience rises from their seats with a thunderous welcome back ovation.
ACT II pays tribute to the people and places in Brooklyn today, with a re-written lyric to Cole Porter's "You're The Top": "You're the top, you're a Brooklyn trolley…you're the top you're a hot bialy!"
In her own words, the evening is also about "the songs that I love, written by people who I love." Through their words and music, she pays tribute to her friends Alan & Marilyn Bergman ("Nice 'n' Easy"/ "That Face"/ "The Way He Makes Me Feel"), Jule Styne ("Gypsy"/ "Funny Girl") and Leonard Bernstein ("Make Our Garden Grow"/ "Somewhere"). She pays loving tribute to her friend Marvin Hamlisch, who passed away as she was preparing for the concert. Her sentimental rendition of "The Way We Were" featuring Hamlisch's original movie score arrangement is heart-aching and life-affirming.
Among the many highlights of the evening, the first time ever pairing of Barbra and her son Jason Gould singing Irving Berlin's "How Deep Is The Ocean," had the audience in awe. Few could have imagined that Gould, an accomplished actor in his own right, also possessed his mother's way with a song. Blended in harmony, their two voices combined are simply magic. Barbra also shares a special birthday video Jason made for her, which features his highly moving solo version of Nat King Cole's "Nature Boy."
Barbra also shares the stage for three songs with the extraordinary trumpet player, Chris Botti. Botti adds his instrumental sophistication to a medley of "What'll I Do" and "My Funny Valentine." Then he weaves in and around Barbra's vocals on two of her own compositions from the soundtrack to "A Star Is Born"—"Lost Inside Of You" and the Academy Award-winning "Evergreen (Love Theme from "A Star Is Born)."
The young Italian singing quartet, Il Volo, accompanies Barbra on a moving version of Charlie Chaplin's "Smile." For the entire concert, Barbra is surrounded by a 60-member strong orchestra comprised of New York's finest musicians, conducted by the renowned composer and arranger, William Ross.
The DVD contains two standout bonus features—Jason Gould's solo performance of the classic Leon Russell song, "This Masquerade," and a documentary entitled "I Remember Barbra," featuring interviews and anecdotes with people who either knew or remembered Barbra as she was growing up in Brooklyn.
Unanimous praise of Streisand's performance included Stephen Holden's enthusiastic review in The New York Times, where he observed, "Like few singers of any age, she has the gift of conveying a primal human longing in a beautiful sound."
With the CD, DVD and Deluxe CD/DVD, Barbra Streisand achieves yet another career milestone and proves along the way that you can take the girl out of Brooklyn, but you can't take Brooklyn out of the girl.
Subsequent to the Brooklyn performances, Ms. Streisand presented a slightly revised version of the concert in record-breaking tours in the US, Canada, Europe and Israel, her first concert appearances in six years.
The concert performance is directed by Barbra Streisand and Richard Jay-Alexander, and written by Barbra Streisand, Jay Landers, Richard Jay-Alexander and Jeffrey Richman.
"Barbra Streisand: Back to Brooklyn" will air on Great Performances on Friday, November 29 at 9 p.m. (check local listings) as part of the PBS Arts Fall Festival.
1. Back to Brooklyn
2. As If We Never Said Goodbye
3. I Remember Brooklyn (Dialogue)
4. Nice 'n' Easy / That Face
5. The Way He Makes Me Feel
6. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
7. Didn't We
8. Smile (w/ Il Volo)
9. Q & A
10. Sam, You Made The Pants Too Long
11. No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)
12. The Way We Were / Through The Eyes Of Love
13. Being Good Isn't Good Enough
14. Rose's Turn / Some People / Don't Rain On My Parade
15. I Remember Barbra
16. You're The Top
17. What'll I Do / My Funny Valentine (w/ Chris Botti)
18. Lost Inside Of You (w/ Chris Botti)
19. Evergreen (Love Theme from A Star Is Born) (w/ Chris Botti)
20. Nature Boy (Birthday video performed by Jason Gould)
21. How Deep Is The Ocean (Duet w/ Jason Gould)
23. Here's To Life
24. Make Our Garden Grow / Somewhere
25. Some Other Time
26. Happy Days Are Here Again
INCLUDES ADDITIONAL BONUS MATERIAL:
27. "This Masquerade" (Performed by Jason Gould)
28. I Remember Barbra Documentary Film
1. I Remember Barbra #1
2. As If We Never Said Goodbye
3. Nice 'n' Easy / That Face
4. The Way He Makes Me Feel
5. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
6. Didn't We
7. Marvin Hamlisch intro
8. The Way We Were / Through The Eyes Of Love
9. Jule Styne intro
10. Being Good Isn't Good Enough
11. Rose's Turn / Some People / Don't Rain On My Parade
12. I Remember Barbra #2
13. You're The Top
14. What'll I Do / My Funny Valentine (w/ Chris Botti)
15. Lost Inside Of You (w/ Chris Botti)
16. Evergreen (Love Theme from A Star Is Born) (w/ Chris Botti)
17. Jason Gould intro
18. How Deep Is The Ocean (Duet w/ Jason Gould)
20. Here's To Life intro
21. Here's To Life
22. Make Our Garden Grow
23. Some Other Time intro
24. Some Other Time