Irene Cara

Irene Cara

Irene Cara was born on March 18, 1959, she was an American singer and actress. She recorded the film’s title song “Fame”, which reached number 1 in several countries. New York City, U.S. Largo, Florida, U.S. Irene Cara rose to prominence in 1980 for her role as Coco Hernandez in the 1980 musical film Fame.

Irene Cara
Irene Cara Escalera | Photo: gettyimages 

Cara released three studio albums: Anyone Can See in 1982, What a Feelin’ in 1983, and Charismatic in 1987, the most successful of these being What a Feelin’. In 1985, she collaborated with the Hispanic charity supergroup Hermanos on the song “Cantaré, cantarás”, in which she sang a solo segment with the Spanish opera singer Plácido Domingo.

Childhood & Early Life

Irene Cara's 56th Annual Academy Awards
Cara’s father, Irene Cara, and Cara’s mother during the 56th Annual Academy Awards Governor’s Ball at Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States | Image by gettyimages

Cara was born in New York City and was the youngest of five children. Her father’s name was Gaspar Cara a factory worker and retired saxophonist, Puerto Rican, and her mother’s name was Louise Escalera, a movie theatre usher, Cuban. Irene had two sisters and two brothers. Cara was one of five finalists for the “Little Miss America” pageant at the age of 3. Cara’s performing career started with her singing and dancing professionally on Spanish-language television. Irena Cara made early TV appearances on The Original Amateurarson’s The Tonight Show. Cara also joined the Professional Children’s School in Manhattan. She performed in the concert and sang the tribute song to Duke Ellington, featured by Stevie Wonder, Sammy Davis Jr.

See also  Tina Turner


Irene at 1984 Academy Awards
Jennifer Beals, Keith Forsey, Irene Cara, And Matthew Broderick At The 1984 Academy Awards Credit: Ralph Dominguez/MediaPunch | Image by Alamy

In the 1970s, she was the original Daisy Allen daytime serial Love of Life. She later took on the role of Angela in the romance/thriller Aaron Loves Angela, followed by her portrayal of the title character in Sparkle. Irena Cara proceeds in on- and off-Broadway theatrical shows including the musicals Ain’t Misbehavin’, The Me Nobody Known Maggie Flynn opposite Shirley Jones and Jack Cassidy, and Via Galactica with Raúl Juliá. In 1976, a readers’ poll in Right On! magazine named her the Top Actress. Television brought Cara international acclaim for serious dramatic roles in two outstanding mini-series, Roots: The Next Generations and Guyana Tragedy: The Story of Jim Jones.

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Vocal appearances on other albums

  • 1986: The Brecker Brothers – Détente (background)
  • 1987: Jimmy Maelen – Beats Workin’
  • 1992: Stanley Turrentine – Home Again
  • 2001: DJ BoBo – Planet Colors
  • 2002: DJ BoBo – Celebration

Stage acting


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Awards & Nomination

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Personal Life & Death

image by GGGPhoto
Irene Cara and Conrad Palmisano wedding in Los

In April 1986, she married stuntman and film director Conrad Palmisano in Los Angeles. They separated in 1991.

On November 25, 2022, Cara died at her home in Largo, Florida, at the age of 63.

See also  Golden Globes 2023

Quick Info

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