Actress Whoopi Goldberg has given us great successes in cinema, television and cabaret
Impossible not to smile again, rethinking her in the guise of the wild Sister Maria Claretta, protagonist of Sister Act: on that occasion the actress Whoopi Goldberg had the opportunity to show off not only her acting skills, but also her enchanting voice. But what happened to it today?
Born in New York in 1955, Caryn Elaine Johnson was a child prodigy who made her stage debut at just 8 years old. From that easygoing girl and a bright future in the entertainment world emerged Whoopi Goldberg, an actress who has marked international cinema with a record that few others have been able to equal over the decades. His is a bubbly and sometimes bizarre personality – just think of his stage name, behind which lies a story made up of pillows that simulate the sound of flatulence.
As a young girl, passionate about music and theater, Whoopi decided to leave school and devote herself to Broadway musicals. It was during this period that she had to face drug addiction problems, overcome thanks to the help of a social worker who also became her husband for a few years. Before reaching success, Goldberg had to do a lot of apprenticeship and, to support herself, also do a lot of jobs. Did you know that she was a dishwasher, bricklayer and even make-up artist at a funeral home?
However, when the success finally knocked on her door it was overwhelming: in 1985, Steven Spielberg cast her as the lead in The Color Purple, which gave her her first Golden Globe and Oscar nomination. A very talented actress, able to play comedic roles and much more committed parts, she has created an extraordinary character: that of the psychic Oda Mae Brown, in the romantic film Ghost – Ghost with Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore. This role led her to earn the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
To mention all the successes of Whoopi Goldberg would be really a feat, but the record we mentioned earlier deserves at least a mention: the actress was one of the few to have achieved an EGOT, or to have won an Emmy, a Grammy, a Oscar and a Tony Award – among other things in just 17 years, one of the fastest climbs in the rankings. The Grammy and the Oscar, as already seen, came respectively for The Color Purple and for Ghost – Phantom. The Emmy is instead due to the tv show Beyond Tara: The Extraordinary Life of Hattie McDaniel, while the Tony Award won it with the musical Millie.
Whoopi Goldberg has had an eventful life also from a sentimental point of view. In the 1970s she was married to Alvin Martin, the social worker who helped her detox from drugs. From this relationship was born the actress's only daughter, Alex Martin – also dedicated to the world of entertainment. In 1986, Whoopi re-married with David Claessen, divorcing only three years later. While in 1994 she tried again, this time with actor Lyle Trachtenberg, but the marriage lasted just a year.
Today, Whoopi Goldberg is a very busy woman: on the professional front, she announced her retirement from the stage in 2006. And if in fact she hasn't had any famous roles in the cinema since then, it is true that this served to focus on independent productions, but also on TV, theater, dubbing and much more. She also embarked on a career as a writer, with some success, but she always kept returning to her first great love. And no doubt she enjoys her gorgeous great-granddaughter: yes, Goldberg became a great-grandmother at just 59!
The biggest surprise, however, came during an interview with Che Tempo Che Fa, in October 2020: the actress announced that she was working on Sister Act 3, the new chapter of the 'saga' that gave her so much notoriety in the 90s. And we are sure that this time too, success will be overwhelming.