Newburyport Public Library

Stand up straight and sing!, Jessye Norman

Jessye Norman is not only one of the world's most admired and beloved opera stars--she is an American icon whose life story is as inspiring as the fictional plot triumphs she sang onstage. Born and raised in Augusta, Georgia, a descendant of many generations of hardworking slave and free ancestors, she grew up amid the challenges of Jim Crow racism, with the civil rights movement just beginning to awaken. Nurtured by a close family and tight-knit community centered on the local church, Jessye sang songs and spirituals constantly, never dreaming that it might lead to a career. Only when she watched a documentary about the legendary Marian Anderson did she first realize that singing could be a profession. Decades later, after a meteoric rise at the Berlin Opera, a long-delayed debut at the Metropolitan Opera, and forays into spirituals, blues, jazz, and other roots music, she has become one of America's cultural treasures. This is an inspiring woman's account of an astonishing life.--From publisher description
Table Of Contents
In the beginning -- A mother's joy -- A father's pride -- Church, spirituals, and spirit -- Racism as it lives and breathes -- Interlude: Marian Anderson -- Growing up in Germany -- The singing craft as art form -- The song, the craft, the spirit, and the joy! -- Woman, life, singer -- And the journey continues
Literary Form
non fiction
Includes index
Physical Description
xx, 316 pages, 16 pages of unnumbered plates, illustrations, 24 cm

Library Locations

  • Newburyport Public Library

    94 State Street, Newburyport, MA, 01950, US