Born Julia Elizabeth Wells, Julie Andrews is best known for her work in The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins .
The daughter of an actor and a pianist, Andrews’ earliest public performances were during World War II, entertaining troops throughout the UK with fellow child star Petula Clark. She made her stage debut at an early age, appearing in London’s West End in 1947. She graduated through radio (on the show Educating Archie) and theatre to starring in stage productions of musicals such as The Boy Friend, My Fair Lady, and Camelot.
When she lost the starring role in the film of My Fair Lady to Audrey Hepburn, she received the consolation of the starring role in Walt Disney’s musical version of Mary Poppins (1964), winning a Best Actress Academy Award as a result (notably, Hepburn wasn't even in the running). She was nominated again, the following year, for her role as Maria von Trapp in The Sound of Music (1965), and thus became, briefly, one of the most sought-after stars in Hollywood. As a result, she appeared in the three-hour epic Hawaii, co-starring with Max von Sydow, and Alfred Hitchcock’s Torn Curtain with Paul Newman (both in 1966), and Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967), with Mary Tyler Moore and Carol Channing.
By her 1959-1967 marriage to Tony Walton, the British director, she had one daughter, Emma Kate Walton. She married her second husband, writer and director, Blake Edward in 1969. In 1974 Julie and Blake adopted 2 Vietnamese orphan girls.
She has written several children's books, under the name Julie Andrews Edwards. Perhaps the most well-known is The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles.
Note: Our authors are dedicated to honest, engaged, informed, intelligent, and open conversation about adoption. The opinions expressed here may not reflect the views of Adoption.com.