Jerrybrice's Blog
The intersection of animation, entertainment, and politics

African-American Superstar Actress And Singer Lena Horne Dies At 92…

LENA HORNE (Jun. 30, 1917 – May 9, 2010) was a ground-breaking singer, actress, and civil rights activist.

In 1942, she became the first African-American performer to be put under contract by a major studio. Horne died on Sunday,Mothers Day May 9, at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York. Her son Kevin Buckley was by her side, and made the announcement of her passing to the world.

She was 92.

The Legendary Lena Horne

The Legendary Lena Horne

Lena Horne was a trailblazing African-American superstar that was at the pinnacle of her career prior to the advancements of Civil Rights, that had to endure the indignities of racism and segregation,which allowed her to perform and entertain white audiences,but prevented her from socializing with that same white audience,slowing her rise to Broadway superstardom.(WIKI)

She began her career at 16, joining the chorus of the Cotton Club, the famed Harlem nightclub where blacks performed before white audiences,and her appearance in the all-black movie musical “Stormy Weather” in 1943 was a triumph. She sang the title tune, which became her signature song.

Horne could have very well become a major movie star but her opportunities were limited by the U.S. practice of racial discrimination and segregation in the first half of the 20th century.(SOURCE)

Many of my generation remember her as the Glinda the good witch at the end of the classic 70’s movie “The Wiz” directed by Sidney Lumet, singing the inspirational hit single, “If You Believe In Yourself”.(VIDEO)

I will remember her as the object of affection for many elderly black men, like my late grandfather, as well as the character Fred Sanford portrayed by legendary comedienne Redd Foxx.My grandfather reacted to Lena Horne, much like I react to the vivacious Halle Berry currently.

As a professional in the field of entertainment, and a black man, I am well aware of the path that Lena Horne blazed for me and my colleagues, so that we could all participate in the entertainment business, without the limitations of segregation and rampant racial discrimination,that hampered, quite unfairly, the career of Lena Horne.

We loved Lena Horne, and she was a shining example of black power, pride, and courage,in the face of racism, and yet, she prevailed,.because she believed in herself…

Lena Horne

Lena Horne

Rest in peace lena Horne, your life was significant,you set the standard,…and you will be missed.

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Read the full story here…

LA TIMES

New York Daily News

Washington Post

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