Audrey Hepburn career personal life and charity work
Known for her glamour, style and elegance, Audrey Hepburn made a significant impact on the lives of a lot of people. Back in the 1960’s Audrey was as popular as Julia Roberts was in the 90’s. I’ve always been inspired by Audrey but I wanted to learn more about her life and efforts to make a difference in the world. Audrey Hepburn has made an impact on many people by the way she lived her life though her childhood, career personal life and charity work.
I. Audrey’s childhood made her who she was, therefore making an impact on many people.
Audrey Hepburn was born on May 4, 1929. She was born in Brussels, Belgium but she had British citizenship and attended school in London England when she was a child. Her mother was a Dutch baroness and her father was an English banker. Her father left the family when she was six years old, so her mother was left to raise her. When Audrey was 10 World War II began and her mother moved her to Nazi-occupied Holland where she suffered poverty and malnutrition. However, while Audrey and her mother lived under difficult conditions, Audrey managed to go to school and take ballet lessons. After the war, Audrey moved back to London to continue to study ballet at the Arnhem Conservatory and become a model.
II. Audrey’s career and professional life has made an impact on many people.
Audrey studied acting and worked as a dancer during her early 20’s. In 1951 while appearing in musical variety shows, she also worked as a film actress, getting small roles in The Lavender Hill Mob and Laughter in Paradise. French writer Colette discovered Audrey and gave her the lead in the Broadway show Gigi, where she got rave reviews. In 1953 Audrey starred in her first American film, Roman Holiday, which earned her an Academy Award for best actress. Audrey won a Tony Award for her last performance on Broadway in Ondine in 1954. Audrey continued to act in movies, appearing in romantic comedies and dramatic films in the 1950’s.
In the 1960’s Audrey acted in several more movies. Her most popular include Breakfast at Tiffany’s, My Fair Lady, How to Steal a Million and Two for the Road. Audrey was a very well respected actress and according to her son Sean, she was always on time and always knew her lines. After appearing in Wait Until Dark in 1967, Audrey went into semiretirement to spend more time with her family. She didn’t return to acting until almost 10 years later when she starred in Robin and Marian. Audrey starred in a couple more movies before her final role in Steven Spielberg’s Always.
Obviously Audrey’s family was very important to her, considering she went into retirement to focus on her husband and children.
III. Audrey’s personal life and family effected her life, which made an impact on many people.
Audrey met her first husband Mel Ferrer, an American actor, when they starred in the Broadway play Ondine together. They married in 1954, the same year that they met. Audrey and Mel had a son, Sean in 1960, and divorced in 1968. Soon after, she married well-known Italian psychiatrist Andrea Dotti, and had a second son Luca, in 1970. Audrey and Andrea separated in 1980 and she spent the rest of her life with former actor Robert Wolders. Audrey was a very good mother, and always put her children first. She did a good job at isolating her children from her career and fame. They grew up in England and went to school with normal children. Her children were hardly aware of her fame. In a book he wrote about his mother Sean wrote that he doesn’t even really know what it’s like to have a famous mother. She never watched any of her movies after they were made, and she shied away when anyone would bring up one of her roles in conversation.
After Audrey’s Hollywood debut, the fashion world has never been the same. It’s hard to believe that a lot of the things that Audrey made popular in the 50’s and 60’s are still fashionable today. I mean look at the sunglasses she wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I have several pair very similar, and big sunglasses are everywhere. I rarely see girls wearing normal sized sunglasses anymore. She was always wearing little black dresses, and lets face it, those will never go out of style. In a few of her movies Audrey wore Capri pants, which have been trendy for quite some time now. She also popularized ballet flats, and cinched waists, both are stylish today.
Although Audrey was a famous actress and fashionista, she cared a lot more about others than she did her career and fashion.
IV. Audrey’s humanitarianism has made an impact on many people.
Something that a lot of people might not know about Audrey is that she was very active in charity work, and loved to help children in need. She was Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, more commonly known as UNICEF. Audrey traveled all over the world to raise awareness and help children in need. According to www.audrey1.com from 1988 to 1992 Audrey went on 8 missions to less fortunate countries to speak to government officials and educate them on the severity of how many children are in need. She helped so many children and families, and made such a difference in the little time she was Goodwill Ambassador from 1988 to her death in 1993. She traveled to Ethiopia, Central America, Mexico, Sudan, Thailand, Bangladesh, Vietnam, and Somalia. When Audrey wasn’t in a foreign country directly helping the children, she was raising money for UNICEF.
The Audrey Hepburn Children’s Fund was created after her death to continue her quest to help suffering children around the world. At the U.S. fund for UNICEF the Audrey Hepburn Memorial Fund is committed to educating children in less fortunate countries such as Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia, and Rwanda. The Audrey Hepburn Children’s Fund created the Audrey Hepburn Children’s House which offers treatment for physically and emotionally abused children. At the Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles, there is an Audrey Hepburn Cares Team, which provides the very best care and health services to suspected victims of child abuse.
Although Audrey died from colon cancer on January 20th, 1993 the legend of Audrey Hepburn lives on. Today I’ve talked to you about how she has impacted many lives through her childhood, career, personal life, and charity work. Audrey was a unique woman. Barry Paris once wrote about Hepburn, “The worst thing she ever did, it seems, was forget to mention Patricia Neal at the 1964 Oscars”. She stood out in her generation by caring about others enough to make a difference. Audrey once said “If you ever need a helping hand, it’s at the end of your arm. As you get older, remember you have another hand: The first is to help yourself, the second is to help others.” I think we could all learn a little something from her.