Tag-Archive for » bigotry «

Celebrating Black History Month!

Billie Holiday, black history month, African-American, people of colorBillie Holiday, jazz singer,one woman cast,segregation      A Tribute to Billie Holiday, in celebration of Black History Month.  It’s always a joy to hear Billie’s music again.

Scent of Magnolia” by Trisha Sugarek.……’tells the story of a young woman who rose above poverty, rape, bigotry, prostitution and imprisonment to become one of the most memorable and celebrated artists of the twentieth century. The one woman show portrays the life of a black jazz singer in America during the 30’s. The script does not dwell on the sensationalism of her addiction to alcohol and drugs but chooses, rather, to celebrate the whole woman and her music.

Billie tells not only her story, but our nation’s story. She interjects her tale with her most famous music as well as some of her more obscure songs. In her own words, she talks about her struggle to succeed in spite of the segregation of that time and the billie Holiday, black singers, musicians, jazz,difficulties she experienced singing with the great bands, most of which were white musicians. Without self-pity , she talks about the

(Note: Original song written by Gary Swindell, for this stage play.) daily slings and arrows that are a part of bigotry. Billie takes complete responsibility for her life, her choices, and her actions. Her triumph was her music and her songs that will live on forever.’                                          

Billie Holiday, jazz, stage play, one act play,

Latrelle Bright as Billie – 2004

black history month, billie Holiday, people of color,…….Ben Rafuse as the ‘piano man’

 

We have much to celebrate this year with people of color serving our country in the   military abroad, serving the community and nation in the political arena.  The many musicians who gave ‘birth to the blues’.

The giants and philosophers, playwrights and politicians…..authors, writers, Walter Mosley

It’s taken us over eighty years to evolve to this point, t williamssince Billie Holiday struggled as a black woman to survive in this country. …….we still have a way to go but we, as a nation, have much to be proud of. Did you miss the post about Savannah’s black orphan kids

James Baldwin, writers, authors

(Hank Aaron,  Kamala Harris, Corey Booker,

Tennessee Williams, Walter Mosley,Martin Luther King, Jr., Spike Lee,   James Baldwin, ) and thousands of others who fill our world and our history. 

 

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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. “The Writer’s Corner” INTERVIEWS with other best-selling AUTHORS! March: Olivia Hawker, April: Dan Sofer 

 

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!
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To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction  Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog”. You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ . Thanks!

More from the Opera Singer/AudioBook Narrator/Producer (part 2)

In Part I, I told you how I got started formatting my existing books into audio books with the help of my producer/narrator Carin Gilfry. Here is the rest of Carin’s story.

audio books, books for kids, fairy tales

Carin as Estrella in Life is a Dream at the Santa Fe Opera

Carin Gilfry, narrator: I always knew how each character should sound by the way the dialogue was written. Cheets in particular, the mischievous and very effervescent elf, quickly became my favorite. I always wanted to be a Disney princess, but in reality, I think I was more like Cheets as a child. Eager, loud, and always wanting to be everyone’s friend. I always intended to narrate books when not in a production, but I actually narrated EEElf, while in rehearsals for Offenbach’s La Perichole with New York City Opera. It worked surprisingly well. Though, I did get locked in a hotel closet, trying to find a quiet space to narrate… Adventures of audiobook narration on the road!children's books, audio books, the fabled forest, elves, fairies more »

Come Ride with Me in my Time Machine * Review

   REVIEW:  “For the Love of Mike” by Rhys Bowen
(5 out of 5 quills)  QuillQuillQuillQuillQuill

I’m totally engaged reading Rhys Bowen‘s Molly Murphy’s mysteries.  Set in the early 1900’s, these books are more than just entertaining mysteries. For example:  The sub-story is of New York City in by-gone days.  Where Ellis Island disgorged immigrants by the thousands,   dumping them on the streets of Manhattan, willy-nilly, to fend for themselves however they could.  Few requirements were imposed;  they had to have five dollars,  be fairly healthy and free of consumption (tuberculosis).  The immigrants could be wanted criminals back in their home country and still be admitted.

At the turn of the century,  Greenwich Village was filled with “students, rowdies, Negroes, miscreants and anarchists(“For the Love of Rhys Bowen, author, Interview, Review, writerMike”)  Ha!  The Village hasn’t changed much!   Hell’s Kitchen and  lower Manhattan were the “Irish Section” and filled with tenements and poverty.  The discrimination of those times was not white against all the others but rather nationality against nationality.  In the Jewish and Italian sections of town there were signs in the windows of shops stating “NO Irish need apply”.  Only Italian and Jewish girls worked in the sweatshops of the garment district; and in Hell’s Kitchen and Five Points other ethnic groups (not Irish) who ventured into those neighborhoods did so at their own peril.

If you are at all familiar with the ‘neighborhoods’ of today’s Manhattan you will quickly see that the face of the city has not changed all that much.  It is still an island of ethnic neighborhoods.  Much to my satisfaction!   That’s how I learned the city from 1991 to 2006….wandering (by design) the streets of each neighborhood  so that we could taste the air there, eat the food and often chat with the inhabitants.  I’ll never forget the time, in Chinatown, when I attempted to photograph the face of an ancient Chinese woman.  She ran me off with her umbrella held high!

Now because of Rhys Bowen brilliant writing I get to revisit those neighborhoods (that I love) in a different era.  My very own TIME MACHINE!

I  so enjoyed  Interviewing Ms. Bowen just recently.
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Coming in August!  A review of Ms. Bowen’s latest release,  “Heirs and Graces”   The Royal Spyness series
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Start your month off right!! DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS. A NEW SERIES, “The Writer’s Corner” INTERVIEWS with other best-selling AUTHORS!

I have had a wonderful response from other authors and plan on featuring an interview once a month .These authors have already responded and you can read their interviews by clicking on their name: : Ann Purser, Susan Elia MacNeal, Robert McCammon, Heidi Jon Schmidt, Mark Childress, Rhys Bowen, Dean Koontz, Amber Winckler, Caroline Leavitt, Sheryl Woods, Jo-Ann Mapson, Jeffrey Deaver, Elizabeth Gilbert, Karen Robards, Walter Mosley, Nora Roberts, Raymond Benson and many others.

So come along with me; we shall sneak into these writers’ special places, be a fly on the wall and watch them create!  July features Rhys Bowen.  Sue Grafton is August’s author and September will feature Tasha Alexander. Jeffrey Deaver is November’s author and  slick mystery writer, Andrew Grant will join us this winter. Loretta Chase will be featured later this year. Raymond Benson is January’s author.
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To receive my posts sign up for my blog, blogs, blogger, writer, author, playwright, books, plays,fiction  Go to the home page; On the right side you’ll see a box where you can enter your email address. Click on “join my blog”. You need to confirm in an email from ‘Writer at Play’ . Thanks!

A LETTER from SPAIN !!

One of the most rewarding parts of being a writer (on the Internet) is the responses I have gotten from all over the world.  India, Australia, Argentina, Great Britian, and now Spain.  Tanya is a working actor and has become interested in Billlie Holiday as a way to fine tune her musical career.

I thought my readers might enjoy her letter,

My name is Tanya R. and I’m an actress interested in training and developing my acting and singing abilities. I came to find your play and I was very lucky to find it (Scent of Magnolia)

I’ve read it and I have really enjoyed it. I hadn’t really gone in depth in Billie Holiday’s life or music. My only objective is to do some training with the play. I was born in Colombia, raised in both Colombia and England and presently live in Spain. I try to develop and work on the characters I play from what is the most difficult for me from a humanistic point of view. I try to work on a basis of affection, humbleness as a person, tenderness and respect with no judging, and I know that can be very very hard. I just think your play is an excellent opportunity to grow as an actress, and as a woman. I find your play very beautiful because though Billie Holiday’s life was so difficult, what attracts me so much is the way the character can be so close to you as you see/listen to her telling her story, so close.

There’s is a lot in it, told with affection and respect. Not only that. I am Colombian, and accent, background, my god, my profile is far from the character’s, which makes it more challenging to work on. I have had a look at your material, and I am very interested in reading all of it. The play with the 4 women seems so interesting to develop such different colours to the characters. Also I work a lot with my son’s friends in creations in video and theatre, they love acting so we do simple things in english as well. You have some material on short plays for young actors which I will be using no doubt.

I am very happy to hear from you and your work. I will let you know about my process, of course. As I said, my aim is to be a better actress and person and your play has the perfect ingredients for it.

A warm hello, Tanya