Liza May Minnelli (pronunciation: /ˈlaɪzə mɪˈnɛli/, born March 12, 1946) is an American actress and singer best known for her portrayal of Sally Bowles in the 1972 musical film Cabaret which won her an Academy Award for Best Actress.
Though born to film actress and singer Judy Garland (1922–1969) and film director Vincente Minnelli (1903–1986), Liza Minnelli never became a child or teenage star. In her teens, she started as a musical theater actress, nightclub performer and traditional pop recording artist in New York City. Critically lauded for her dramatic performance in the film The Sterile Cuckoo (1969), she rose to international stardom with Cabaret and the Emmy Award-winning TV special Liza with a Z (1972). Most of her following film projects got mixed reviews and failed commercially, and she had no major movie hit except the 1981 comedy Arthur. She successfully returned to Broadway stage starring in the musical The Act in 1977. Primarily known as a pop standard singer, she recorded contemporary singer-songwriter material through the late 1960s and 1970s, which mostly failed to chart.
Struggling with drug use, Minnelli became one of the first prominent people openly talking about rehab. From the late 1970s on, her work has focused on concert tours and nightclub performances. She gave highly regarded performances at Carnegie Hall in 1979 and 1987, and at Radio City Music Hall in 1991 and 1992. Switching between old school entertainment and contemporary music in the late 1980s, she both toured Frank, Liza & Sammy: The Ultimate Event alongside Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. and recorded the pop album Results produced by the British duo Pet Shop Boys. Many of her albums are live records.
Struggling with viral encephalitis, Minnelli returned with her concert show Liza's Back in 2002 and made critically acclaimed guest appearances in the sitcom Arrested Development from 2003 to 2013, while continuing to tour internationally and performing Liza's at The Palace...! on Broadway in 2008/2009.
Minnelli is considered both an American icon and a gay icon. She has won an Academy Award, being nominated once more, two Golden Globe Awards, one Emmy Award, two Tony Awards, in addition to one Grammy Legend Award and one Special Tony, as well as many other industry and critics awards. In 2000, Minnelli was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame.