Marian Anderson: Born February 27, 1897

Contralto Marian Anderson was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A variety of sources suggested February 17, 1902, as her birthdate; however, Anderson’s birth certificate, released by her family after her death, listed the date as February 27, 1897. Her father was an ice and coal salesman, and her mother was a former teacher.

Although Anderson had early showed an interest in the violin, she eventually focused on singing. The Black community, recognizing her talent, gave her financial and moral support. She also gained the notice of tenor Roland Hayes, who provided guidance in her developing career.
http://www.afrovoices.com/anderson.html

February 25~ African-American visual artists

Terry Adkins (1953-2014)
African-American artist known for his fusion of sculpture, performance, and music
https://www.levygorvy.com/artist/terry-adkins/

Matinée (Installation view) / 2007-2013 / Bronze, steel, hangers, burnt cork / 74”x62”

 

 

Marilyn Nance (Born 1953)
African-American new media artist, photographer and storyteller
https://www.loc.gov/rr/print/coll/womphotoj/nanceessay.html

Three Placards, New York City / 1986 / Gelatin silver print / 5 7/8”x8 3/4”

 

Nancy Wilson: Born February 20, 1937

Nancy Wilson’s musical style is so diverse that it is hard to classify. Over the years her repertoire has included pop style ballads, jazz and blues, show tunes and well known standards. Critics have described her as “a jazz singer,” “a blues singer,” “a pop singer,” and “a cabaret singer.” Still others have referred to her as “a storyteller,” “a professor emeritus of body language,” “a consummate actress,” and “the complete entertainer.” Then who is this song stylist (that’s the descriptive title she prefers) whose voice embodies the nuances of gospel, blues, and jazz? Her colleague and long time friend Joe Williams used to call her “the thrush from Columbus.”
http://musicians.allaboutjazz.com/nancywilson

NPR: “Heifetz and Kreisler: Setting Standards for the Violin”

HeifetzKreisler

Jascha Heifetz and Fritz Kreisler were both born on Feb. 2 — Kreisler in 1875 and Heifetz in 1901. But the two men share more than just a birthday. Music commentator Miles Hoffman joins Renee Montagne to discuss the two famous fiddlers and how they each set new standards for the art of playing the violin.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=7121113

I Want To Hold Your Hand

February 1, 1964 was the day that a Beatles song hit Number One for the first time in the USA. The song was “I Want To Hold Your Hand”. The Beatles flew into JFK on February 7 and made their first appearance on Ed Sullivan two days later. And we all had a gear time!

https://www.rockhall.com/inductees/beatles
http://www.rollingstone.com/music/lists/100-greatest-beatles-songs-20110919/i-want-to-hold-your-hand-19691231

Frank Sinatra: Born December 12, 1915

Francis Albert Sinatra [was born] in Hoboken, New Jersey. Although his mother had hoped that he would be the first person in the family to attend college and was disappointed that he did not finish high school, she encouraged his ambition to be a singer. His father, on the other hand, was opposed and insisted that he should find a job. The young Sinatra worked briefly as a truck driver for a newspaper, a riveter in a Hoboken shipyard, and a fruit hauler. By 1932, he had decided that he wanted to be a professional singer.
http://www.anb.org/view/10.1093/anb/9780198606697.001.0001/anb-9780198606697-e-1803570

His break came in 1937, when he and three instrumentalists, billed as the Hoboken Four, won on the Major Bowes Original Amateur Hour. After some touring, the group disbanded. Harry James signed Sinatra to sing with his orchestra, and on July 13, 1939, two weeks after his debut as a big-band vocalist at the Hippodrome Theatre in Baltimore, Sinatra cut his first disc, “From the Bottom of My Heart,” with the orchestra.
http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/frank-sinatra/biography

James graciously freed Sinatra from his contract when the singer received a more lucrative offer from bandleader Tommy Dorsey in December 1939. By 1942 Sinatra’s fame had eclipsed that of Dorsey, and the singer yearned for a solo career.
https://www.britannica.com/biography/Frank-Sinatra

Between 1943 and 1946, Sinatra’s solo career blossomed as the singer charted a slew of hit singles. Sinatra made his movie acting debut in 1943. In 1945, he won a special Academy Award for The House I Live In, a 10-minute short made to promote racial and religious tolerance on the home front. Sinatra’s popularity began to slide in the postwar years (but) in 1953, he made a triumphant comeback, winning a supporting actor Oscar for From Here to Eternity.
https://www.biography.com/people/frank-sinatra-9484810

In the mid-’70s Sinatra’s career slowed down, but in mid-1980, after a five-year recording hiatus, he released Trilogy which included a version of “Theme From New York, New York” that the city fervently adopted. In 1985, he was accorded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award. Frank Sinatra died of a heart attack on May 14, 1998, in L.A.
http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/frank-sinatra/biography

https://schristywolfe.com/2015/12/12/frank-sinatra-born-december-12-1915/

Maria Callas: Born December 2, 1923

colorCallasMaria made her first professional appearance in von Suppe’s Boccacio in 1939 and sang the leading part in Tosca in 1942. After a series of disappointments and resenting envy by her colleagues, she returned to the American land of her birth. She lived there for two years (1945-1947), met the bass Nicola Rossi – Lemeni and through him came to know the tenor Giovanni Zenatello, artistic director of the Arena of Verona. Maria Kalogeropoulos left for Italy, met the industrialist Giovanni Batista Meneghini, married him, became Maria Callas and experienced her artistic life’s curtain raiser without suspecting that she was about to emerge as the lyric theatre’s most brilliant personality. Her first appearance in Italy as La Gioconda was directed by Tulio Serafin. Her acquaintance with him would lead her to new forms of expression.   http://www.hri.org/MFA/thesis/autumn97/callas.html

Callas’ ability to sing such a wide range of roles was one of the things that led to her meteoric rise. But criticcallasPiano Conrad Osborne says it also contained the seeds of her vocal decline. Callas’ voice was already starting to fail her by the time she was in her 40s — quite young for an opera singer. A number of factors, including a rapid loss of weight, may explain why. But Osborne, who also teaches voice, says Callas lacked the proper technique to sustain her ambitious repertoire.But for Callas fans like James Jorden, the diva more than made up for her vocal flaws with her talent for bringing the music to life. Her imperfections set her apart, and her ability to find the emotional meaning in a role was unsurpassed.  http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=123612228

callasPosingBy the time of her retirement, she had performed more than 40 different roles and had recorded more than 20 complete operas. Callas’s personality and philosophy of performance are powerfully depicted in Terrence McNally’s play Master Class (first performed and published 1995), based on her classes at Juilliard.   http://www.britannica.com/biography/Maria-Callas

Leighton Artists Studios, Banff, Alberta

Independent Residencies in the Leighton Artists Studios

The nine unique studios are each designed by a distinguished Canadian architect and provide a perfect setting for individuals and collectives from a wide variety of artistic genres to create new work. Leighton artists contribute significantly to culture and the arts in Alberta, throughout Canada, and around the world.

Although all studios are equipped with kitchenettes, artists do not live in their studios; on-site accommodation and meal plans are provided separately.

Artists with a professional standing in their field and emerging artists of promising talent are encouraged to apply. Applications are accepted from a variety of disciplines: writers, composers, singer-songwriters, visual artists, screenwriters, playwrights, literary translators, curators, art theorists, and professionals working in theatre, dance, and film at the conceptualization or research stage of a project.

Applications are being accepted for the following time periods in 2018: May 1 – June 30, 2018 and August 1 – December 31, 2018 (no availability in July 2018).

Residences must be at least one week in length to a maximum of four weeks.

Fees, rates, and how to apply~ https://www.banffcentre.ca/programs/independent-residencies-leighton-artists-studios/20180501
Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity~ https://www.banffcentre.ca/