On Streisand begins with a broad year-by-year outline of the landmark achievements, followed by a short biography, some chapters exploring key points in the artistry, then-the major part of the book-a work-by-work analysis. The work-by-work section is broken down into separate chapters, each organized chronologically: the stage shows, then the television shows and concerts, then the movies, and last (because longest) the recordings. Throughout, Mordden follows Streisand's independence, which he sees as her central quality. Throughout all of the chapters on Streisand's shows, concerts, films, and recordings, Mordden illustrates how she was exercising individualistic control of her career from her very first audition, and how the rest of her professional life unfolded from that point.
A book written by an opinionated expert whose prose is consistently full of flair and wit, On Streisand: An Opinionated Guide will appeal to general readers in all aspects of American life that Streisand has touched, from film to television to popular music to stardom.
Ethan Mordden is a recognized expert on American musical theatre and the author of When Broadway Went to Hollywood, Anything Goes: A History of American Musical Theatre, Beautiful Mornin', Coming Up Roses: The Broadway Musical in the 1950s, and On Sondheim: An Opinionated Guide, all published by Oxford University Press. His writing has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and The New Yorker. His numerous books include friendly introductions to opera and film, as well as five collections of short stories chronicling gay life in New York City. He lives in Manhattan.