“Flashdance” singer Irene Cara has died at age 63, her publicist, Judith Moose, announced on the late performer’s website on Saturday.
“It is with profound sadness that on behalf of her family I announce the passing of Irene Cara,” the statement read.
“The Academy Award winning actress, singer, songwriter, and producer passed away in her Florida home. Her cause of death is currently unknown and will be released when information is available.”
The statement continued, “Irene’s family has requested privacy as they process their grief.
“She was a beautifully gifted soul whose legacy will live forever through her music and films. Funeral services are pending and a memorial for her fans will be planned at a future date.”
Moose then tweeted that having to break the news about her client’s death is “the absolute worst part of being a publicist.”
“I can’t believe I’ve had to write this, let alone release the new,” she added. “Please share your thoughts and memories of Irene. I’ll be reading each and every one of them and know she’ll be smiling from Heaven. She adored her fans. – JM.”
Cara was born in the Bronx and began performing as a child, appearing on “The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson” and as a regular on “The Electric Company.”
She’s best known for playing the role of Coco Hernandez in the 1980 movie “Fame” and also singing the title track, along with other hit songs from the film like, “Hot Lunch Jam” and “Out Here On My Own,” which earned her two Grammy wins.
In 1984, Cara won an Oscar for the song “Flashdance … What a Feeling” from the film “Flashdance,” starring Jennifer Beals and Michael Nouri. She co-wrote the monster hit — which also won a Grammy — and sang it.
Other movie credits include her roles as Sparkle Williams in the original 1976 musical drama “Sparkle” and Ginny Lee in “City Heat” with Clint Eastwood.