Paul Robeson (April 9, 1898 – January 23, 1976)was a critically acclaimed Black actor, performer, and activist. Before he began performing, he was awarded a scholarship to Rutgers University where he played football, and then went on to Columbia Law School where he got an LL.B.
At Columbia, Robeson began singing and acting for the first time seriously. He was a participant in the Harlem Reniassance before going overseas to Britain to begin his performing career, where he settled with his wife for a while.
For a while Robeson put his acting career on hold to speak out about the Spanish Civil War. He also became involved in the Civil Rights Movement, and was placed on the FBI watch list for apparent ties to communism.
Robeson’s credits include:
- Othello (Othello), 1945
- John Henry (John Henry), 1944
- Show Boat (Joe), 1940
- Black Boy (Black Boy), 1932
- The Dreamy Kid/ The Emperor Jones (Brutus Jones), 1926
- All God’s Chillun Got Wings (Jim Harris), 1925
- Taboo (Jim), 1924