Thursday, August 20, 2020

Ex-wife of Andrew Lloyd Webber to Receive Star in Hollywood

Happy Duo: Sarah and Andrew
Soprano Sarah Brightman has performed with opera legends Luciano Pavarotti, José Carreras, Plácido Domingo, as well as Andrea Bocelli. In June it was announced that she will be getting a rare honor: a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Curious about the opera singers that Ms. Brightman will share the same sidewalk with in California? After the jump, you can see them all and you're going to be surprised by how many appear on the list! Notably missing thus far is Renée Fleming. The British songstress first
 launched into fame with a 1978 hit "I Lost My Heart to a Starship Trooper" with the group Hot Gossip. She went on to marry composer Andrew Lloyd-Webber which propelled her stage career like a rocket after appearing in several of his musicals. She has an estimated net worth of $60 million while her former husband is estimated to have $1.2 billion. Her Facebook page made the announcement: "Sarah to Be Honoured with a Star on the Iconic Hollywood Walk of Fame! Today, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce announced that Sarah will be honoured with a star on the world-renowned Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles for her outstanding contributions in live theatre and live performance. Currently celebrating its 60th year, the Walk of Fame was created to "maintain the glory of a community whose name means glamour and excitement in the four corners of the world." Watch the announcement on the official Hollywood Walk of Fame Facebook page: More details about when Sarah's star will be unveiled along Hollywood's most majestic walkway will be revealed in the coming year!" In his tell-all book, the Broadway composer discussed his relationship with the Royal College of Music graduate: "'I suppose it was
Music Makers: Talking music drew the couple together
inevitable that I was going to have a serious affair at some point,' writes composer Andrew Lloyd Webber of his romance with singer Sarah Brightman in his book Unmasked. The candid new memoir hits stands on Tuesday, the same month as the theatrical legend’s 70th birthday. What made the affair complicated? They first met during Brightman’s audition for Cats in the early 1980s, a time when they were both married. Lloyd Webber also had two young children with his first wife (also named Sarah) of 12 years. '[The affair with Sarah Brightman] is one of the parts of my life that I have been dreading writing about the most,' Lloyd Webber writes. 'What you are reading is the umpteenth rewrite. That is the best I can say.' In the chapter titled 'Miss Sarah Brightman,' Lloyd Webber details how his famous musical Phantom of the Opera came into existence — a show that brought both Lloyd Webber, the composer, and Brightman, who starred as Christine Daaé, great success. With their professional relationship thriving, their personal lives became much more complicated when Lloyd Webber realized he was in love with Brightman, who is 13 years his junior, in March 1983. According to his memoir, Lloyd Webber’s relationship with Brightman was 'sealed' during a trip together to northern Italy. 'Sarah wore a white miniskirt that elicited whistles from windows of houses that I swore were uninhabited,' he writes, 'I was somewhat embarrassed, even more so than I had been by the astonishing white fur coat that she had worn on the plane over which La Bohème aficionados might say was more Musetta than Mimi.'
 He adds, 'But I loved talking music with Sarah and yes of course I loved the vicarious looks I got from the waiters in our deserted hotel and of course I loved the sex.'
Disco Starlet: Early days of Brightman's career
Lloyd Webber writes that by the time they arrived at the Splendido Hotel in Portofino, Italy, he had no other option than to propose to Brightman. 'Well, in truth it wasn’t so much a proposal as a ‘we’re in love, we’re both married, what the f— do we do about it?'' he writes. 'We decided that Sarah would meet my mother, I would meet her parents and if we survived that test I would break the news to my first Sarah.' After they shared the news of their relationship with their parents (his mother was surprised, Brightman’s parents 'were a bit nonplussed'), it took Lloyd Webber 'two false starts' before he was able to break the news to his first wife. 'If someone can be both devastated yet resigned at the same time, that’s what Sarah was. There were moments when I wavered,' he writes. 'Sarah even suggested that she turned a blind eye and let me lead a double life to keep the marriage intact. But I couldn’t lead my life like that.' The composer thought it best to release a press statement about their relationship. 'It wasn’t our fault that Sarah and I fell in love,' he told the Daily Express. 'We talked and talked about what we should do about it. In the end I drew a line down a piece of paper and put on one side the ‘pros’ and on the other side the ‘cons’ of us trying to get free to marry. The ‘pros’ came out only just ahead, but it was from that moment that I decided to tell my wife.' According to Unmasked, 'it was horrible year' for Lloyd Webber, who moved out of his house and saw his kids every third weekend. 'Imo was just 5 and Nick 3; Imo certainly understood something of what was happening,' Lloyd Webber writes. 'Thank goodness Imo never blamed herself for what happened as some children do when their homes are smashed. Sarah B was great with the kids…' Both Lloyd Webber and Brightman were each divorced by mid-March 1984. The couple then married secretly at the registry office in Kingsclere, England
EMI: The soprano also recorded her husband's
Requiem for the British label
on March 22. By January 1990, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Sarah Brightman were divorced — Lloyd Webber was in love with someone else." Learn more about Sarah's background:
"Brightman began her career as a member of the dance troupe Hot Gossip and released several disco singles as a solo performer. In 1981, she made her West End musical theatre debut in Cats and met composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, whom she later married. She went on to star in several West End and Broadway musicals, including The Phantom of the Opera, where she originated the role of Christine Daaé. Her original London cast album of Phantom was released in CD format in 1987 and sold 40 million copies worldwide, making it the biggest-selling cast album ever. After retiring from the stage and divorcing Lloyd Webber, Brightman resumed her music career with former Enigma producer Frank Peterson, this time as a classical crossover artist. She has been credited as the creator and remains among the most prominent performers of this genre, with worldwide sales of more than 35 million albums and two million DVDs, establishing herself as the world's best-selling soprano. Brightman's 1996 duet with the Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, 'Time to Say Goodbye,' topped the charts all over Europe and became the highest and fastest-selling single of all-time in Germany, where it stayed at the top of the charts for 14 consecutive weeks and sold over three million copies. It subsequently became an international success, selling 12 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling singles of all-time. She has collected over 200 gold and platinum record awards in 38 different countries. In 2010, she was named by Billboard the fifth most influential
Pop Appeal: Brightman transitioned
from Broadway to mainstream
and best-selling classical artist of the 2000s decade in the US and according to Nielsen SoundScan, she has sold 6.5 million albums in the country. Brightman is the first artist to have been invited twice to perform the theme song at the Olympic Games, first at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games where she sang 'Amigos Para Siempre' with the Spanish tenor José Carreras with an estimated global audience of a billion people, and 16 years later in 2008 in Beijing, this time with Chinese singer Liu Huan, performing the song 'You and Me' to an estimated four billion people worldwide. In 2012, Brightman was appointed as the UNESCO Artist for Peace for the period 2012–2014, for her 'commitment to humanitarian and charitable causes, her contribution, throughout her artistic career, to the promotion of cultural dialogue and the exchanges among cultures, and her dedication to the ideals and aims of the Organization.' Since 2010, Brightman has been Panasonic's global brand ambassador. In 2014, she began training for a journey to the International Space Station, later postponed until further notice, citing personal reasons. Brightman was awarded the decoration 'Cavaliere' in the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic on 2 June 2016 and an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Hertfordshire in 2018, in recognition of her outstanding contributions to music and theater."

A literal "who's who" of opera singers from the last century line the boulevards in Hollywood, California, on the Walk of Fame. In addition to classical instrumentalists and conductors, these are the opera singers that have been designated with a star:


Some highlights from Sarah Brightman's body of work: