Barbra Streisand won't sing unless she is being paid.

Barbra Streisand

Barbra Streisand

The 74-year-old star is about to release 'Encore: Movie Partners Sing Broadway', her 35th studio album and first LP for two years, but despite having one of the most recognisable singing voices in the world she doesn't use it at home.

Instead, Streisand saves her vocal talents for when she is going to get a cheque for using it.

In an interview on UK TV show 'Lorraine', she said: "I worry (about my voice) - I haven't sung in two years. Really, I haven't made a sound because I don't go around singing. There's no signing in the shower, no vocalising, no singing any time - unless I'm paid to sing!"

Streisand is joined on the record by a host of actors, such as Jamie Foxx, Hugh Jackman, Alec Baldwin and Daisy Ridley, and she admits it was a joy to recreate so many great songs from musicals.

She said: "I love getting performances out of actors and telling a story. I love Broadway, why not act and sing?"

Despite enjoying a career on screen and stage that has spanned six decades and earned her two Academy Awards, 10 Grammys and five Emmys among many other accolades, Streisand doesn't think of herself as a huge star.

In actual fact, the 'Funny Girl' actress finds many aspects of fame very unappealing.

She explained: "There's part of me that just doesn't know who I am. I remember once there was a woman staring at me as I was was waiting for an elevator and kept thinking, 'Why is she staring at me?' Then I realised, 'Oh, I'm whatshername.' I don't understand stardom, I never will and I didn't expect it to be like it was. It's like when you're a child and you want attention and you want to be loved and that's all well and good. But then you get that fame and what comes with it is not so pleasant. I'm only interested in the work - that's what I've realised about myself."

Streisand takes her most pleasure from her family, her husband James Brolin, 76, and her son, actor-and-director Jason Gould - her child with her ex-husband Elliott Gould.

She shared: "I'm pretty happy now, I have a good marriage. It's been 20 years since we met, time goes so fast. I'm very proud of my son. I feel very grateful."