We would like to highlight Jessye Norman as the first Diamond in the Spotlight in celebration of Black History Month.
Photo Credit-National Public Radio
Photo Credit Link: https://www.npr.org/artists/15347875/jessye-norman
Authentic, classy, beautiful -three words that describe the stage presence of Jessye Norman, a world renowned American opera singer from the small town of Augusta, Ga. Yes, right in our own backyard. Ms. Norman was born Sept. 15, 1945. In a 2014 interview at the Chicago Humanities Festival, the opera singer discussed her life story and book, “Stand Up Straight and Sing.” She recalls holding a handheld radio to her ear as she listened to her favorite opera singers every weekend as a child.
Ms. Norman has completed her education through some of the nation’s most prestigious institutions. Such schools including Howard University where she received a music scholarship at the age of 16 and the Peabody Conservatory. Jessye Norman is fluent in various languages including Italian and French as she believes that one should never sing in a language they don’t know. Ms. Norman has traveled around the world where she has gained a variety of life and career experiences she often mentions during her interviews.
Overtime, Jessye Norman has accumulated various awards and honors including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, her place in the Georgia Music Hall of Fame, and the National Medal of Arts from President Obama. Although these are only a few of her extensive list of work and accomplishments, Jessye Norman has made a mark in the world of opera through her voice. Because of Ms. Norman’s achievements, the Jessye Norman School of the Arts was constructed to aide disadvantaged youth by shaping their crafts in various areas of the arts.
She has definitely earned her spot in Be A Girl Like Me! Inc.’s Diamond in the Spotlight list. Every girl and woman can look at Ms. Norman’s career and character and become inspired by the wonderful work she has done!