Ida Forsyne was a renowned jazz dancer and recognized as one of the best of all time.
Forsyne was born in Chicago, Illinois. Her mother worked as a domestic servant and her father disappeared from the family when Forsyne was just two years old.
By the age of ten, Forsyne was singing and performing making small amounts of money. She performed for birthdays, candy shops, house-rent parties, and she cakewalked, sometimes earning as much as twenty-five cents a day for the Chicago World’s Fair.
At the age of fifteen, she joined the Sisseretta Jones’ Black Patti Troubadours. She filled in for one of the sick young girls who were already in the company. During her performance, she pushed a baby carriage across the stage and sang a lullaby, ‘You’re Just a Little N****r but You’re Mine All Mine.’
From 1920-1922, Forsyne worked as a personal maid, both onstage and off stage to vaudeville performed. She moved to New York, where she auditioned but was not hired at Harlem nightclubs such as the Cotton Club, Connie’s Inn, and the Nest because they preferred the light-skinned chorus girls.
After retiring from dancing in the early 1930s, she found work as a domestic servant, she even worked as an elevator operator. Her career resume also included appearing in film including, A Daughter of the Congo an Oscar Micheaux movie Birthright in 1935, and the 1936 film, The Green Pastures. Ida Forsyne died at age 100.