Denzel Washington is urging his wife of 23 years to come out of retirement and resume her singing career. Singer PAULETTA PEARSON gave up her career as a Broadway actress and singer to marry Washington and raise their four children - but now the 51-year-old is encouraging his wife to return to her roots. He showed her what she is missing at a special 45th birthday party he threw for her, when he pushed her onstage to sing one of her favourite songs, Roberta Flack ballad THE FIRST TIME EVER I SAW YOUR FACE. Washington says, "She wouldn't (sing) but the whole time I had Roberta Flack hiding in the hallway and she started singing it. Pauletta was floored." He adds, "I don't think she should sit around the house waiting for me. I respect the sacrifices she's made. I want her to do her thing."