Daughter helps mom meet idol

For one FAMU rattler, tuning into the small screen this week will mean more then it ever has.

Junior journalism student Streisand Sanders recently gave her mother the gift of a lifetime, and on Oct. 14, it will air on CBS.

Lifelong fans of singer Barbara Streisand, Streisand and her mother Valencia Sanders will appear on an episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show dedicated to Barbara Streisand this Tuesday.

For more than 30 years, Valencia Sanders has loved Barbara Streisand’s music. She has collected memorabilia that includes pictures, albums, movies and books.

“I’ve always been a fan, since I was a kid,” Valencia Sanders said. She decided to name her daughter after the singer when she was just a teenager.

Streisand Sanders is now 20, and her mother’s love for Barbara Streisand has played an important role in her life. Often the two have spent time together, watching a Streisand movie or listening to one of her albums.

Though it was always Valencia’s dream to see the singer perform, money and distance kept her from attending any of Barbara Streisand’s shows.

“She [Streisand] does a Vegas show on New Year’s Eve. [But] who can afford to go?” Valencia Sanders said, citing high-priced tickets.

Her daughter soon proved that money would not matter.

When Streisand Sanders found out that Barbara Streisand was going to be on the Oprah Winfrey Show, she e-mailed the show’s producers and explained why she believed her mother should go. She described her mother’s lifelong love for Barbara Streisand and her eagerness to meet the star.

The show’s producers soon responded to Streisand Sander’s e-mail by secretly inviting mother and daughter on the show. After conferring with Streisand Sanders, they surprised Valencia Sanders with the news and captured her response on camera. Soon after, she was surprised again when her daughter unexpectedly appeared on the Chicago set.

It was clearly an emotional experience for the elder Sanders. “I just cried for everything… at the restaurant, at the show,” Valencia Sanders said. She was touched. “It was the nicest thing anybody has ever done for me,” Valencia Sanders said.

Streisand Sanders enjoyed a few moments with Barbara Streisand backstage. Sanders described the star as, “laid back, open, and warm.” They had a casual conversation where Barbara Streisand asked Streisand Sanders what it was like to have the first name Streisand, and asked Sanders what her friends call her. Sanders explained that her friends call her Streisand, or “Strei,” for short. The star was moved that one of her fans had named her daughter after her.

Though meeting Barbara Streisand was certainly the highpoint of the trip, there were other perks as well. Streisand Sanders and her mother praised the accommodations made for them and the special treatment they received.

Sanders said: “We had the full Oprah experience.”


FYI: The show will air on CBS at 4 p.m. Oct. 14.