Stand Up Straight and Sing!
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In Stand Up Straight and Sing!, Jessye Norman recalls in rich detail the strong women who were her role models, from her ancestors to family friends, relatives, and teachers. She hails the importance of her parents in her early learning and experiences in the arts. And she describes coming face-to-face with racism, not just as a child living in the segregated South but also as an adult out and about in the world.
She speaks of the many who have inspired her and taught her essential life lessons. A special interlude on her key relationship with the pioneering African American singer Marian Anderson reveals the lifelong support that this great predecessor provided through her example of dignity and grace at all times.
service to civil rights but was not sincere. And so when watching President Eisenhower or listening to social and political discussion, my parents made certain that we understood the laws of the day. Remember, the casting of a vote was not at all a sure thing for African Americans pre-1965. There were poll taxes, and literacy tests that asked ridiculous questions like how many bubbles are in a bar of soap, or how many beans in a large jar. It was not possible to know whether or not such
profession will often take you away from your family and friends, familiar and comfortable surroundings, not to mention the difficulties of travel itself.” Be certain that you are willing to offer this much of yourself to your craft, as only then will you have all that is inside you to offer for those occasions when your craft might well be realized fully. I am continually amused and bemused that those who are outside of the arts world often think that those of us who make a living in these
world which He created, according to His will, v’yamlich malchuteh, may He establish His kingdom b’chayechon uv’yomechon during our life and during our days uv’chayeh d’chol bet Yisrael, and during the life of all the house of Israel, baagala uvizman kariv. even speedily and soon. V’imru: Amen. And let us say: Amen. Y’heh sh’meh rabba m’vorach Let His great Name be blessed l’alam ul’almeh almaya. forever and to all eternity. Yitbarach, v’yishtabbach v’yitpaar, Blessed, praised and
performance. She and I shook hands, as I did not feel it appropriate in this culture to embrace a child unknown to me, and to my delight she stated what I can only imagine she had rehearsed hundreds of times: “Welcome to Japan, Miss Norman.” AN OBSESSION WITH the culture of youth is simply not in evidence in some parts of the world. In several countries the mature are revered. Take, for instance, the Living National Treasures of Japan: those masters who have achieved a very high degree of
Divine gratitude, I became yours. Habe Dank. For this, I thank you! Acknowledgments ALL TEACHERS in the public schools of Augusta who it was my privilege to have as guides, at C. T. Walker Elementary School, A. R. Johnson Junior High School, and Lucy C. Laney High School. Those generous parts of the community there that supported the young lives of all of us. Howard University, for giving me a place to grow into adulthood with my heritage, and responsibility to that heritage, in sharp,