Posts tagged "African American"
I am so saddened by the loss of the great Geoffrey Holder who died on Sunday at the age of 84. Please read the tribute/announcement by Leo Holder. Mr. Holder was born in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad on August 1, 1930 and danced with his brother Boscoe’s dance troupe as a child. He arrived in New York in 1952 at the invitation of the legendary choreographer, Agnes de Mille and, to pay his fare, he sold 20 of his paintings. He would go on to win a Guggenheim Fellowship for painting in 1957. A few years before, he was a principal dancer at the Metropolitan Opera Ballet and appeared on Broadway in Truman Capote’s “House of Flowers,” where he would meet Carmen de Lavallade, his wife of 59 years. In 1975, Mr. Holder won two Tony Awards in the same evening for directing and choreographing the Broadway musical, “The Wiz.” He is best known to most for his film and commercial roles: as Baron Samedi in the 1973 James Bond film, “Live and Let Die” and of course, as the “Un-cola Man” in the ubiquitous 1970s 7-Up commercials and the 1992 film “Boomerang.” In this picture, Mr. Holder is sitting in front of one of his paintings, sometime in the 1960s. Photo: Bradley Smith/Corbis.

I am so saddened by the loss of the great Geoffrey Holder who died on Sunday at the age of 84. Please read the tribute/announcement by Leo Holder. Mr. Holder was born in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad on August 1, 1930 and danced with his brother Boscoe’s dance troupe as a child. He arrived in New York in 1952 at the invitation of the legendary choreographer, Agnes de Mille and, to pay his fare, he sold 20 of his paintings. He would go on to win a Guggenheim Fellowship for painting in 1957. A few years before, he was a principal dancer at the Metropolitan Opera Ballet and appeared on Broadway in Truman Capote’s “House of Flowers,” where he would meet Carmen de Lavallade, his wife of 59 years.

In 1975, Mr. Holder won two Tony Awards in the same evening for directing and choreographing the Broadway musical, “The Wiz.” He is best known to most for his film and commercial roles: as Baron Samedi in the 1973 James Bond film, “Live and Let Die” and of course, as the “Un-cola Man” in the ubiquitous 1970s 7-Up commercials and the 1992 film “Boomerang.” In this picture, Mr. Holder is sitting in front of one of his paintings, sometime in the 1960s. Photo: Bradley Smith/Corbis.

Esther Rolle (1920-1998) and Bern Nadette Stanis go over a “Good Times” script together in 1975. Photo: Isaac Sutton of Ebony.

Esther Rolle (1920-1998) and Bern Nadette Stanis go over a “Good Times” script together in 1975. Photo: Isaac Sutton of Ebony.

My father, Erskine Butterfield, was a musician in Newark, NJ during the 1930s-1950s. He is credited with helping to create what is known as “Cocktail Music.” He had his own weekly radio program atop Bamberger’s Department Store in downtown Newark at WOR radio. One of his guests was a then unknown singer, Miss Lena Horne. He also recorded for the Decca and New Brunswick labels, and was a protege of Willie “The Lion Smith”, because he had a strong left hand; he played and composed Boogie Woogie music.”

I am so pleased and impressed with the submissions to #myVBG! We have beautiful mothers, grandmothers, aunts, family friends and fathers like Jacqueline Butterfield’s father, Erskine Butterfield. Jacqueline’s note and photo of her dad on #myVBG made my “Nichelle’s Picks” page.

I would love to see your family and friends on on #myVBG. Upload your photos at http://myvbg.com/ with her name, city, date/location of photo, a fun VBG-ish fact about her with #myVBG and #vbgbook. I am selecting a few pictures on the “Nichelle’s Picks” page but really, every submission is my “favorite.” Thank you!

I am thrilled to have Janet Collins, the first Black prima ballerina at The Metropolitan Opera, in my upcoming book. But it also thrills me to see her getting more recognition and exposure in other ventures. My pal Karyn Parsons (Yes, that Karyn Parsons…) is the founder of Sweet Blackberry, whose mission is to bring little-known stories of African American achievement to kids. She created a Kickstarter to fund the 20-minute short on Janet Collins’ life that she is producing with Chris Rock narrating. Sweet Blackberry has produced two previous shorts for kids (on Henry Box Brown and Garrett Morgan) narrated by Alfre Woodard and Queen Latifah. Please check out the video at this link and donate - even as little as $1 can help! - so we can get this video in homes, schools and libraries around the world.https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/798791271/the-janet-collins-story-presented-by-sweet-blackbe

Today is the last day to pre-order in time to have your name listed inside of my Vintage Black Glamour book and have your name (or a loved one) listed in the Roll of Honour, a special set of pages to thank early supporters. You can still pre-order before the September release, but if you want to see your name in print, now is the time! You can pre-order by clicking HERE. Thank you!

Ruby and Ossie - In This Thing Together…  

Ruby and Ossie - In This Thing Together…  

Vintage Black Glamour is a bit like a high-minded celebrity Instagram feed that challenges and adds to American pop culture iconography… Gainer’s collection of images isn’t your grade-school Black History Month bulletin board. “Vintage Black Glamour” reminds you that these people had friends and confidants and lovers and charming idiosyncrasies, and that’s what Gainer wants you to see: humanity. “Every month is Black History Month on ‘Vintage Black Glamour,’” she said.” Many thanks to Soraya Nadia McDonald for this fantastic article on VBG in today’s Washington Post! I think she did a good job of explaining what I am doing with Vintage Black Glamour.