All the black beauties and talents featured here at this website was everything and more America wanted performers and movie stars to be...except white...that was their only flaw to white America who held their fate in their hand. Here, you will be learning about many early beautiful, talented Black entertainers, actresses, and actors of the Golden Era of Stage and Screen, who you won't learn about in school, books, or in everday mainstream media because they've been overlooked in Black History, Movie History and Entertainment History. The reasons many have become overlooked is because some stayed stars within the black community and so unfairly their contributions are looked at as insignificant, some didn't crossover to white mainstream, some didn't appeared in Hollywood films, or be the stereotype ( some say sellout) or image white society wanted them to be in exchange for worldwide fame. In spite of these frivolous
reasons, many unsung black performers were still dominant, influential figures in the world of entertainment, and their stories need to be told and their talent seen and heard and appreciated.
These trailblazers really helped Blacks progress on stage and screen by creating their own images, movies, being and becoming their own role models, contributing so much through their talent showing that Blacks could do their own thing and be successful at it, but they never received their deserved recognition. They were among the first to lay the foundation of versatility among Black entertainers that mainstream America wasn't ready for. They helped in erasing the stereotypical roles, making people judge their talent, rather than their color. They also made their race proud by not forgetting where they came from, who they were, or losing their identity through opportunism, faddism, materialism, and white-ism. These unsung greats used their inherented talents to disspell myths, be seen and heard in their own way, and to truthfully represent their race and culture in all its glory, beauty, individuality, creativeness, and versatility, that mesmerized and influenced the world, contributing largely to America's history or should I say herstory too!
The so-called first blacks were usually tokens chosen by whites and therefore considered the first stars by whites, because they were ones who whites chose to pay attention to. For the "firsts" to be crossover successes, many had to discard their blackness and lose their freedom of creativity and originality, and their new images had to be charted by whites. There were many black talents before, during, and after Lena Horne, Dorothy Dandridge, Sidney Poitier, and Harry Belafonte, who achievements were equal, but because they weren't branded or labeled or created by whites, they were looked at as unimportant by mainstream media and history. Hopefully, this website will help bring recognition to the true "firsts," who were all firsts, because they all brought new styles, images, voices, and talents for the world to enjoy. They showed black come in all shapes, sizes, colors, talents, and weren't the same, but versatile, "colorful" people.
Another reason so many black performers have been overlooked in the past and now is because there was a limit to how many blacks could become stars on a first come, first serve basis. There was always one major black star, and others had to take a backseat, and take the leftovers, because at the time, the entertainment industry would never allow to many black stars at once, particulary in Hollywood, mainly because it was felt one black was enough, and it was felt one black star could represent the whole race, blacks were looked at as a whole, completely ignoring they were individuals with their own talents, expressions, and beauty.
Is Black History and Classic Hollywood only remembering Black Stars who crossed-over and appealed to white mainstream? Does white acceptance determined who's worthy of being remembered? Is a Black person's success based on whether they have a white audience or had white involvement, and if they didn't, are they considered not important enough to be remembered? Are Hollywood movie historians being unfair and partial by remembering a few Blacks actors and actresses that only appealed to their standards? Why not commend all the Blacks who contributed beauty, talent, and images to stage and screen? Many aren't remembered who REALLY did contribute to Blacks progress in entertainment but were and still are overshadowed by cross-overs.
Hopefully this website will help viewers learn of the amazing careers and lives of unsung ladies and a few gents who contributed to Black history, movie history and entertainment history, and were just as beautiful and extremely talented as the ones who are widely remembered.
Check back often for updates, more bios, more photos, and more info. Email me if you have any questions or to request an actress or entertainer to include in this website. If you're a relative or know any of any of these talented women, please do get in touch with me. Please sign the guestbook. Thank you and I hope you enjoy your stay.
Bessie Smith, Ethel Waters, Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, Hattie McDaniels, Paul Robeson, Josephine Baker, Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, Marian Anderson, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte are among the most visible and celebrated early Black performers, actors, and actresses, but they were not the only ones. Many others were involved in the arts and given the times in which they lived, achieved tremendous results in the face of great adversity and helped pave the way for many who are well-known, so below you will learn about a few unsung hereos.