Every Friday, we choose an alum who has been making headlines—for better or for worse.
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Meryl Streep ’75MFA

Meryl Streep ’75MFA didn’t get 14 Oscar nominations for just doing the same-old same-old. This weekend, she turns up singing and dancing in, of all things, a movie musical based on the songs of the 1970s pop group ABBA. Streep has sung before, in films ranging from Postcards From the Edge to A Prairie Home Companion (and in an unforgettable performance on Philadelphia Chickens, an album of songs by Sandra Boynton ’74, ’79Dra), but her performance in Mamma Mia! is by all accounts a tour de force—though critics disagree about just what kind.

USA Today said the movie is “worth the ticket price just to see her belt it out, jump up and down on a bed, dance in platform shoes and slide down a banister. … Streep and the rest of the cast appear to be having the time of their lives.” New York Times critic A. O. Scott, on the other hand, says, “It is safe to say that Streep gives the worst performance of her career—safe to say because it is so clearly what she intends, and she is not an actress capable of failure. There is a degree of fascination in watching an Oscar-winning Yale School of Drama graduate mug and squirm, shimmy and shriek and generally fill every moment with antic, purposeless energy, as if she were hogging the spotlight in an eighth-grade musical.”

Filed under celebrities, performing arts, School of Drama, alumnae
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