Julie Andrews: An intimate biography

3,73 valoración promedio
( 255 valoraciones por Goodreads )
 
9780749951627: Julie Andrews: An intimate biography

Julie Andrews is, quite simply, a phenomenon. She has probably brought more joy to more people than any other star of her generation' - Richard Attenborough. Julie Andrews is the last of the great Hollywood musical stars - her extraordinary career spans more than forty years. Her first film, Mary Poppins, was Disney's most successful film, and in 1965 The Sound of Music rescued Twentieth Century Fox from bankruptcy. Three years later, Star! almost put the studio back under, and the leading lady of both films fell as spectacularly as she had risen.But Julie Andrews is nothing if not a survivor; and despite many setbacks - including the tragedy of losing her singing voice in 1997 after a botched operation - she's still a performer, recently starring in Shrek and The Princess Diaries. Richard Stirling's deeply researched biography - based on many years of contact with Julie - is a frank but affectionate portrait of an enduring icon of stage and screen.

"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

About the Author:

Actor Richard Stirling has appeared on television and on screen - including parts in Great Expectations, The Secret Agent and Mrs Dalloway. He has interviewed Julie Andrews and curated a film tribute to her at the National Film Theatre for her 70th birthday in 2005.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Chapter One

 

Weather and Tide Permitting

 

Julia Elizabeth Wells entered the world at six o"clock in the morning of Tuesday 1 October 1935, at Rodney House Maternity Home, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey. The healthy eight-pound baby, named after her grandmothers Julia Morris and Elizabeth Wells, was born under the star sign of the Balancing Scales, indicating what she later defined to me as her "typically Libran" ambivalence. Other characteristics – ruthless objectivity, a horror of confrontation, maintaining a positive outlook – would not be long in developing. Given the childhood in store for her, baby Julia would need them all.

 

At the height of Julie worship in the 1960s, an astrologer at the London Daily Express, given only the time and date of her birth, concluded of the mystery subject:

 

This woman is a fundamentally an idealistic person, and one who has a basic compulsion for harmony. She will perpetually strive to "strike a balance" – in her activities, relationships, aspirations.

 

She will have a streak of reserve, due to shyness and lack of complete self-confidence; thus, she will assume a mask of apparent self-assurance which she does not actually possess . . . The personality she reveals to the world at large will be charming, friendly and seemingly rather naïve, but there is a part of herself which she never reveals – not so much because of a desire to deceive others, but due to her shyness and sensitivity.

 

Blake Edwards later confirmed this aspect of his wife: "She"s still finding out about herself. She"s a good lady. But she"s shy."

 

In one of the most negative articles ever written about Julie, Esquire journalist Helen Lawrenson thought otherwise, defining her as having "a background not customarily compatible with reticence and timidity". But there was never anything remotely customary about Julie Andrews, in personality or circumstance. Her abilities came not from her stars, but from the widely disparate natures of her parents: practical common sense from her father, and – more than she knew – artistic brilliance through her mother"s line.

 

Her father, Ted Wells, the son of a carpenter, was a handicrafts schoolteacher, a quiet romantic with a deep love of poetry and the English countryside – passions he would pass on to his daughter. Winning a scholarship to Tiffin School in Kingston-upon-Thames, Ted had gained an excellent basic education, but could ill afford further study. After six years, he took up an apprenticeship with a local construction company, specialising in the production of transformers: there, he fell in love with a vivacious redhead of seventeen named Barbara Morris.

 

In complete contrast to Ted, Barbara was a larger-than-life show-business personality, helping her sister Joan run a local dance school while pursuing a career as a popular pianist. Julie was taught to sing and dance – "almost from the time I could toddle" – but Barbara would play even more of a key role in her daughter"s career after marrying her second husband, Julie"s stepfather Ted Andrews.

 

This much was well-documented family history, to which Julie would always have a characteristically well-versed set of responses. Yet her lineage was more disturbing, so well hidden that she was sixty-seven before she learned the story of her maternal grandparents. Only then could she fully understand her mother"s frustration and later alcoholism – and, perhaps, know herself rather better too.

 

On Saturday 3 July 1976, a letter appeared in the South Yorkshire Times. Jim MacFarlane, of the University of Sheffield, had tried to research an almost forgotten local hero, commonly known as "The Pitman"s Poet". He knew the best-known examples of the writer"s work but little else, merely that the poet had left South Yorkshire in the interwar years and that his daughter Barbara had, he said, been "a very good piano player" – just as Julie would later describe her mother as "a fine pianist".

 

MacFarlane made the connection for himself. "Arthur Morris, our Celebrated Colliery "Deputy" Artiste," he wrote, "had another claim to fame – as the grandfather of Julie Andrews, actress."

 

At the time nobody seemed very interested. In 1976, Julie Andrews had been absent from the big screen for six years (with the exception of a low-budget thriller made by Blake Edwards – himself at a low ebb – two years earlier). Her much-vaunted television series had been axed after only one season. Even so, there was a remarkable lack of effort to contact the coal miner"s granddaughter.

 

Then, over a quarter of a century later, came sensational revelations from the research of a Yorkshire solicitor, Giles Brearley, into the history of his coal-mining community. A keen historian in his spare time, Brearley had happened upon the same pieces of Morris"s poetry. He recognised them as exceptional, capturing the desperate dignity of the coal mining towns in the early decades of the twentieth century. Brearley was determined to piece together the life of Arthur Morris. After endless hours spent trawling through archives, he succeeded, and in 2004 published his fascinating book The Pitman"s Poet.

 

Morris, a gregarious fellow with a fine speaking voice, had been a popular character in the mining villages of South Yorkshire, going from door to door, enveloped in a black cloak, to recite his poems. A book of his early work – containing "The Miner"s ABC", a definition of the collier"s lot – was sent to King George V. In 1924, one of his poems, "Wembley Colliery", exposed the resentment felt by many pit families at the sanitised model colliery built for the British Empire Exhibition:

 

Then hats off to our miners all and hats off to their wives,

They never know from day to day, "ere they may lose their lives.

And do not think our collieries are quite so danger free

As the perfect ideal pit you"ve seen called Wembley Colliery.

 

When, in 2003, Brearley wrote to Julie with the new-found information, she sent her half-brother up to Yorkshire to "make sure" of him. "You know what sisters are like," Christopher Andrews explained.

 

"It was amazing that Julie knew nothing of Arthur"s achievements," Brearley told me later. "I was astounded, when Chris came to visit, that the school where his mother had had so much happiness was unknown to him. He did not even know where she was schooled."

 

I asked Julie"s other half-brother Donald if the news made sense of unexplained family issues. "I can"t be specific," he replied, slowly, "but some pieces of the jigsaw would certainly fit into place."

 

On a Christmas trip to London, Julie hosted a family gathering at the Dorchester Hotel. So voluble was she about the discovery that Christopher had to remind her, "Remember, Jules, he"s my grandfather too."

 

Previously, all that Julie knew of her grandfather was that he had served in the army. In a magazine article of 1958, she had written of him as "a fine musician . . . a drum major in the Grenadier Guards" – but "never on the stage". But Giles Brearley"s real discovery had less to do with Morris"s work than with his life – a dramatically chequered existence, culminating in a tragic and sordid end. Barbara had died in 1984, Joan fifteen years later, keeping the full, unexpurgated story to themselves. "Obviously the trauma felt by her mother and aunt was very deep indeed," Brearley told me. "Their formative years were just blotted out from memory." Their father had been a convict and – as I confirmed for myself – both parents had died horrible deaths.

 

William Arthur Morris was born in 1886, possibly illegitimate, to a working-class family in the railway town of Wolverton, Buckinghamshire. Quitting his first job as a barber, he joined the Army as a volunteer in 1909 and was posted to Caterham Barracks in Surrey, where he completed training as a guardsman. The tall, handsome young soldier became friendly with a twenty-two-year-old maid from north-west Surrey. Julia Mary Ward was the daughter of a gardener from Stratford-upon-Avon, whose family had moved shortly after her birth to Hersham (then a village, later a suburb of Walton-on-Thames) to live next door to the local laundry, at Gable Cottage in Rydens Grove.

 

Julia, susceptible to Arthur"s easy way with words, soon fell pregnant. The couple were married on 28 February 1910, one month after Arthur decided to extend his military service for another seven years, and one month before he was promoted to lance corporal. On 25 July, their first daughter, Barbara, was born.

 

According to Giles Brearley, five days later, Arthur Morris and his new family disappeared, absent without leave. It was over a year before the Army caught up with him. At a local Bonfire Night gathering on 5 November 1912, he was spotted and arrested. Branded a deserter, he faced a court martial, and on 18 November was thrown into the cells of Caterham Barracks, where his military career had commenced with such promise.

 

After a month behind bars, he was discharged on compassionate grounds, to provide for his wife and baby. Starting anew, Arthur joined the Shakespeare Colliery near Canterbury and rose remarkably quickly to the position of pit deputy, thus being exempt from the First World War call-to-arms. A second daughter, Joan, was born in 1915 – and Arthur, clearly uncomfortable with parental responsibility, disappeared once more.

 

In his book, Brearley traces Arthur"s path north, where he took up work as a pit deputy in the more profitable coal mines of South Yorkshire. His family joined him at Denaby Colliery, outside Doncaster, where they integrated well. Joan was more reserved than her vivacious elder sister Barbara, who was, by all accounts, a happy and confident child, highly proficient at the school piano.

 

Arthur became a key member of the local charitable lodges. Taking part in their concerts, he performed his own poems, which he had started to compose around 1920. One of the best received of these was "A Pit Pony"s Memory of the Strike", during the industrial action of early 1921:

 

At last I"m on the surface; from the cage I"m led away,

They take the cover off my eyes; I see the light of day.

Later on my mates come up and then it came to pass,

They took us down into a field and turned us out to grass.

We held a meeting in that field, "twas just beside a dyke

And we came to the conclusion that the pit must be on strike.

 

As Arthur"s reputation grew, he abandoned the secure existence at the colliery for a precarious living as a poet. Moving to the more cosmopolitan town of Swinton, he continued to sell his poems, and hosted local dances at which his elder daughter played the piano; sometimes he accompanied her on drums.

 

Barbara"s reputation was threatening to outstrip that of her father: she had by now performed in many of the towns of South Yorkshire, and twice at the BBC studio in Sheffield. In January 1926, passing her London College of Music examination, she seemed set for a career as a concert pianist. And then the family broke up.

 

Arthur"s success in his new occupation was in part achieved thanks to the attentions of higher-born ladies, to whose houses he was now invited – at which his wife Julia was hopelessly ill at ease. Just when he succumbed to temptation is unclear, but he almost certainly contracted syphilis before Julia decided to leave him. In February 1927, she and her daughters went back south to her family home in Hersham.

 

The biggest casualty of the arrangement was Barbara, whose musical ambitions were utterly ruined. At the age of eighteen, having to support an ailing mother and thirteen-year-old sister, she found work in a Surrey factory, making transformers. It was there that she met Ted Wells, an apprentice who, eager to better himself, was attending night school after a day"s work.

 

To boost her family"s meagre income and pay for Joan"s dancing lessons, Barbara taught the piano. By the turn of 1928, she had an extra burden to bear. Her wayward father, unable to look after himself any longer, turned up in Hersham. Riddled with syphilis and rendered almost insane, he brought into the house another disease to shadow his elder daughter for the latter part of her life: alcoholism.

 

He found work for a while as a metal polisher, but it was a hopeless case. On 31 August 1929, Arthur Morris died at Brookwood Mental Hospital, Woking, aged forty-two. The cause of death was given as "General Paralysis of the Insane", which he had suffered for some "considerable duration". Two years later, on 22 June 1931, Julia also died, only forty-four years old. The death certificate listed the horrors her husband had inflicted upon her, including tabes dorsalis: congenital syphilis. He had destroyed her, in more ways than one – but her Christian name would live on in the next generation.

 

Lack of money forced Barbara and Joan to move again and again, to ever-cheaper apartments. For each move, Ted Wells lent a helping hand, borrowing a builder"s handcart to carry their one valuable possession: a piano. At one stage, times were so hard for Barbara and her younger sister that Ted sold his motorcycle for £12 to help pay their rent. It was an enormous sacrifice: as a newly qualified handicrafts teacher, he needed to travel as much as forty miles to give lessons at schools in five different villages. He now had to cover the daily route by bicycle, his only consolation being that he rode through some of the most picturesque scenery in Surrey.

 

After Ted"s first term as an itinerant teacher, he and Barbara decided to wait no longer. On Boxing Day 1932, they were married at St Peter"s Church, Hersham, witnessed by Barbara"s maternal grandfather William Ward, and Ted"s mother Elizabeth Wells. On their joint earnings, they could just manage a rental of £1 a week for a prefabricated asbestos bungalow on the outskirts of town.

 

Joan"s dance training had begun to pay dividends, in the form of a small dance school in Hersham, with half-hour lessons costing only a shilling. These were held in the evening at a local preparatory school, and the enterprise was very much a team effort. Joan taught, Barbara provided piano accompaniment and Ted built the props and scenery. Often working until the early hours of the morning, he created pieces such as a twenty-four-foot model of the liner Queen Mary or an elaborate roundabout, his expertise bringing a touch of professionalism to the school shows.

 

Ted and Barbara Wells had now been married...

"Sobre este título" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

Comprar nuevo Ver libro

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America

Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

Añadir al carrito

Los mejores resultados en AbeBooks

1.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Little, Brown Book Group, United Kingdom (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 10
Librería
The Book Depository
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Little, Brown Book Group, United Kingdom, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Julie Andrews is, quite simply, a phenomenon. She has probably brought more joy to more people than any other star of her generation - Richard Attenborough. Julie Andrews is the last of the great Hollywood musical stars - her extraordinary career spans more than forty years. Her first film, Mary Poppins, was Disney s most successful film, and in 1965 The Sound of Music rescued Twentieth Century Fox from bankruptcy. Three years later, Star! almost put the studio back under, and the leading lady of both films fell as spectacularly as she had risen.But Julie Andrews is nothing if not a survivor; and despite many setbacks - including the tragedy of losing her singing voice in 1997 after a botched operation - she s still a performer, recently starring in Shrek and The Princess Diaries. Richard Stirling s deeply researched biography - based on many years of contact with Julie - is a frank but affectionate portrait of an enduring icon of stage and screen. Nº de ref. de la librería AA29780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 11,44
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

2.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Portrait 2007-11-08 (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 3
Librería
Chiron Media
(Wallingford, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Portrait 2007-11-08, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería NU-GRD-00484089

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 9,08
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,33
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

3.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Little, Brown Book Group, United Kingdom (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 10
Librería
The Book Depository US
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Little, Brown Book Group, United Kingdom, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Julie Andrews is, quite simply, a phenomenon. She has probably brought more joy to more people than any other star of her generation - Richard Attenborough. Julie Andrews is the last of the great Hollywood musical stars - her extraordinary career spans more than forty years. Her first film, Mary Poppins, was Disney s most successful film, and in 1965 The Sound of Music rescued Twentieth Century Fox from bankruptcy. Three years later, Star! almost put the studio back under, and the leading lady of both films fell as spectacularly as she had risen.But Julie Andrews is nothing if not a survivor; and despite many setbacks - including the tragedy of losing her singing voice in 1997 after a botched operation - she s still a performer, recently starring in Shrek and The Princess Diaries. Richard Stirling s deeply researched biography - based on many years of contact with Julie - is a frank but affectionate portrait of an enduring icon of stage and screen. Nº de ref. de la librería AA29780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 12,74
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

4.

Richard Stirling
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Cantidad: 3
Librería
BWB
(Valley Stream, NY, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Estado de conservación: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Nº de ref. de la librería 97807499516270000000

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 13,17
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

5.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Portrait (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 4
Librería
The Monster Bookshop
(Fleckney, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Portrait, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. BRAND NEW ** SUPER FAST SHIPPING FROM UK WAREHOUSE ** 30 DAY MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. Nº de ref. de la librería mon0000288145

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 13,25
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 1,06
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

6.

Stirling, Richard
Editorial: Little, Brown Book Group (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Tapa blanda Cantidad: 3
Librería
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Little, Brown Book Group, 2007. Estado de conservación: New. 2007. Paperback. Julie Andrews is the last of the great Hollywood musical stars - her extraordinary career spans more than forty years. Her first film, "Mary Poppins", was Disney's most successful film, and in 1965, "The Sound of Music" rescued Twentieth Century Fox from bankruptcy. This is a portrait of an enduring icon of stage and screen. Num Pages: 384 pages, Section: 16, 16pp colour plates. BIC Classification: APB; APF; BGF. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 130 x 26. Weight in Grams: 320. . . . . . . Nº de ref. de la librería V9780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 14,51
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Irlanda a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

7.

Stirling, Richard
Editorial: Little, Brown Book Group
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Tapa blanda Cantidad: 3
Librería
Kennys Bookstore
(Olney, MD, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Little, Brown Book Group. Estado de conservación: New. 2007. Paperback. Julie Andrews is the last of the great Hollywood musical stars - her extraordinary career spans more than forty years. Her first film, "Mary Poppins", was Disney's most successful film, and in 1965, "The Sound of Music" rescued Twentieth Century Fox from bankruptcy. This is a portrait of an enduring icon of stage and screen. Num Pages: 384 pages, Section: 16, 16pp colour plates. BIC Classification: APB; APF; BGF. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 130 x 26. Weight in Grams: 320. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Nº de ref. de la librería V9780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 14,73
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

8.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Little, Brown 2007-11-08, London (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
Blackwell's
(Oxford, OX, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Little, Brown 2007-11-08, London, 2007. paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería 9780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 11,85
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,34
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

9.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Piatkus (2007)
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Tapa blanda Cantidad: 1
Librería
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Piatkus, 2007. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería GH9780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 11,65
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,99
De Alemania a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

10.

Richard Stirling
Editorial: Little, Brown Book Group
ISBN 10: 0749951621 ISBN 13: 9780749951627
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 12
Librería
THE SAINT BOOKSTORE
(Southport, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Little, Brown Book Group. Paperback. Estado de conservación: new. BRAND NEW, Julie Andrews: An Intimate Biography, Richard Stirling, Julie Andrews is, quite simply, a phenomenon. She has probably brought more joy to more people than any other star of her generation' - Richard Attenborough. Julie Andrews is the last of the great Hollywood musical stars - her extraordinary career spans more than forty years. Her first film, Mary Poppins, was Disney's most successful film, and in 1965 The Sound of Music rescued Twentieth Century Fox from bankruptcy. Three years later, Star! almost put the studio back under, and the leading lady of both films fell as spectacularly as she had risen.But Julie Andrews is nothing if not a survivor; and despite many setbacks - including the tragedy of losing her singing voice in 1997 after a botched operation - she's still a performer, recently starring in Shrek and The Princess Diaries. Richard Stirling's deeply researched biography - based on many years of contact with Julie - is a frank but affectionate portrait of an enduring icon of stage and screen. Nº de ref. de la librería B9780749951627

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 8,46
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 7,74
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

Existen otras copia(s) de este libro

Ver todos los resultados de su búsqueda