History – Paul LeRoy Bustill Robeson

September 27th, 2009 by Black Gospel Choir


Paul Robeson was the first major concert star to popularize the performance of Negro spirituals and was the first black actor of the 20th century to portray Shakespeare’s Othello on Broadway. As of 2009 Robeson’s run in the 1943–45 Othello production still holds the record for the longest running Shakespeare play on Broadway. In line with Robeson’s vocal dissatisfaction with movie stereotypes, his roles in both the American and British film industries were some of the first parts ever created that displayed dignity and respect for the African American film actor, paving the way for Sidney Poitier and Harry Belafonte.

Posted in Black History | 2 Comments »

2 Responses

  1. Shakira Harbin Says:

    Hey sad that you left the earth but till this day, we still listen to your music.

  2. Jerry Redmond Says:

    It is really a shame that so few people now even remember this man. With a career as a scholar, film star, star of Broadway productions, an attorney, and a social activist, he predated Jackie Robinson, Martin Luther King, Jr., James Earl Jones, and many other now more famous people. His was an extraordinary life and he was one of the few people for whom the term “larger than life” really seems to fit. Paul Robeson was an indomitable spirit who paved the way for so many who followed in his footsteps years and even decades later.

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