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Arts and Entertainment by Joy Amidror, Yalana Levin, and Sam Stein

Arts and Entertainment by Joy Amidror, Yalana Levin, and Sam Stein


Mrs. Tainsky: Because she was lighter skinned that- it made it easier for her to fit into the art world. She was wonderful, she had a wonderful voice, she was a beautiful woman so I think that made it somewhat easier to cross into white theater. Mrs. Tainsky: Ah, Alex Haley’s mini-series of all things, the first mini-series on ABC ever. And certainly depicting the life of a slave, and his whole family, it was generational, it was very dramatic for people, and people didn’t want to know the truth. The capturing of the slaves, the treatment on the ships, one episode where he tries to run away and gets his foot cut off in the beginning of the movie, This is all very gruesome. People didn’t even think about it, didn’t talk about it, it’s many generations removed. So, it’s like, anything that is not in your context. Was, Look who- Guess who’s coming to dinner with Henry (Sidney) Poitier and it was amazing to see a white having a black person coming to dinner which was, unusual in those times for sure. You had black entertainers and you had black theater like in Harlem the Apollo Theater most of the jazz and black singers sang [there] but there wasn’t much mixing between blacks and whites. Mrs. Tainsky: so, I think he was popular because, the more unusual, shall I say there were very few. Singers, there was Sammy Davidson Jr., there was… some of the women who sang, jazz. But in terms of theater, and movies, he was probably the number one African American star.

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