Happy 70th Birthday Diana Ross!!! Still #TheBOSS

Happy 70th Birthday Diana Ross!!! Still #TheBOSS

Happy 72nd Birthday Aretha Franklin! #RESPECT

Happy 72nd Birthday Aretha Franklin! #RESPECT

Happy Belated 61st birthday Chaka Khan!!! Your March 23rd birthday kicks off Diva Birthday Week at VBG. We love you! Photo: Neal Preston/Corbis.

I really believe you are going to faint when you see the gorgeous photos I have of Margot Webb and her dance partner, Harold Norton, in Vintage Black Glamour. Their photos only tell part of their story. Their undeniable elegance turned out to be a blessing – and a curse for their career. You’ll read more about it in the book, but Ms. Webb herself told the dance scholar Brenda Dixon-Gottschild that dwindling opportunities solidified her decision to return to school. After her dance days were long gone, she earned a bachelor’s degree at Hunter College in 1940 and a master’s degree in education from Columbia University Teachers College in 1948.

General Colin L. Powell proves the old adage “Nothing is new” is very true! He shared this 60 year old photo of himself on his official Facebook page with this caption: “Throwback Thursday - I was doing selfies 60 years before you Facebook folks. Eat your heart out Ellen! The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Lena Horne and Josephine Premice in a scene from the 1958 Broadway musical Jamaica. Ms. Premice (1926-2001), a phenomenal Haitian-American singer, dancer and actress, was nominated for a Tony Award for her role in the show. She was also the mother of writer/producer Susan Fales-Hill. Photo: Bettman/Corbis.

Lena Horne and Josephine Premice in a scene from the 1958 Broadway musical Jamaica. Ms. Premice (1926-2001), a phenomenal Haitian-American singer, dancer and actress, was nominated for a Tony Award for her role in the show. She was also the mother of writer/producer Susan Fales-Hill. Photo: Bettman/Corbis.

People tend to say the same two things about Dorothy Dandridge (“She was so beautiful!” “Her life was so tragic!”) Well, she was definitely beautiful (by most counts on the inside and out) and she did endure tough challenges in her life, but she was also a relentless hard worker. When she was not rehearsing for one of her nightclub performances, she was studying acting and dance and constantly working to create more opportunities for herself in Hollywood. At one point in the 1950s, she teamed up with Nat “King” Cole to pitch a television series where they would play a married couple (“small time” entertainers trying to catch a break in show business). It is our loss that they were turned down all over town (can you imagine watching clips of that today?!) In this photo, Ms. Dandridge is rehearsing with the great composer, arranger and vocal coach Phil Moore in March 1951. Mr. Moore also coached, arranged and/or wrote songs for Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, Lena Horne, Judy Garland, Pearl Bailey, Ava Gardner, Diahann Carroll, Johnny Mathis and The Supremes.

People tend to say the same two things about Dorothy Dandridge (“She was so beautiful!” “Her life was so tragic!”) Well, she was definitely beautiful (by most counts on the inside and out) and she did endure tough challenges in her life, but she was also a relentless hard worker. When she was not rehearsing for one of her nightclub performances, she was studying acting and dance and constantly working to create more opportunities for herself in Hollywood. At one point in the 1950s, she teamed up with Nat “King” Cole to pitch a television series where they would play a married couple (“small time” entertainers trying to catch a break in show business). It is our loss that they were turned down all over town (can you imagine watching clips of that today?!) In this photo, Ms. Dandridge is rehearsing with the great composer, arranger and vocal coach Phil Moore in March 1951. Mr. Moore also coached, arranged and/or wrote songs for Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, Lena Horne, Judy Garland, Pearl Bailey, Ava Gardner, Diahann Carroll, Johnny Mathis and The Supremes.