Today In Black History On January 27th

2 Posted by - January 27, 2016 - January, Today In Black History
  • Will Marion Cook is born (January 27, 1869) and goes on to be a successful composer and conductor throughout his life. As an African-American in jazz music, it can be hard to stand out. However, when you have the talents of Cook, everything comes naturally. His interest in music peaked at around age 15, when he went off to study violin at Oberlin College. This eventually led to him getting enough attention to study overseas at the Berlin Hochschule für Musik with Joseph Joachim. This was one of his many steps to becoming an established musician. As a side note, he was a huge influence on jazz legends Duke Ellington and singer Eva Jessye. They were one of the many students that he mentored throughout his career.
  • Invisible Man wins the National Book Award (January 27, 1952) putting Ralph Ellison on the map as a go to author. This was impressive considering this was his first novel, and what’s even more impressive is how widely it was received. Time Magazine and The Modern Library named his novel one of the 100 best novels of the 20th century, a staggering achievement. The Invisible Man is an incredible book that is so well written, it manages to draw 1:1 parallels between the struggles of Black people today, and of those in the past. It has remained relevant since being published, and is used in many university courses.
  • Leontyne Price makes her debut (January 27, 1961) at Metropolitan Opera House. Her voice was beyond incredible, which is one of the many reasons she landed popular roles in II Trovatore, Antony and Cleopatra, and Aida. She had the stunning beauty to match, and went on to become a world renowned opera singer in huge demand worldwide. Encouragement at a young age by her parents was good motivation to become a superstar, including from her mom Kate Baker Price who also possessed a great voice.

Sources:

http://memory.loc.gov/diglib/ihas/loc.natlib.ihas.200038839/default.html

http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2014/05/30/317056807/ralph-ellison-no-longer-the-invisible-man-100-years-after-his-birth

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