HIDDEN VOICES SPOTLIGHT
Born in Pontotoc, Mississippi and educated at Rust College (a Historically Black College), Ohio State University and the Juilliard School (graduating in 1934), Ruby Elzy enjoyed a successful and varied career before she died in her early 30s. She was both a trained soprano and actress with credits including The Emperor Jones (1933) as Dolly and Birth of the Blues (1941). Elzy became one of the most acclaimed singers of her generation even though her career was just a decade long. She created the role of Serena in George Gershwin’s folk opera, Porgy and Bess, and performed it more than 800 times. Elzy sang the demanding aria “My Man’s Gone Now” at the 1937 Gershwin Memorial Concert, which took place at the Hollywood Bowl three months after the composer’s death. Harold Arlen chose Elzy to record the world premiere of his “Reverend Johnson’s Dream,” an original suite of Negro Spirituals.
EDUCATING IS ACTIVISM:
DGF is focused on the intersection of social justice, American history, and the arts. Deeply inspired by the achievements of America’s hidden musical figures, the foundation is invested in doing research and educating the public about their remarkable stories of courage and persistence. From enriching our musical heritage to preparing the diverse pool of tomorrow’s vocal stars, DGF will positively impact how artists are valued in this nation, encouraging inclusive opportunity, access, and advocacy for the next generation.
1050 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste. 500
Washington, DC 20035
1740 Broadway, 15th floor
NYC, NY 10019
Copyright 2022 The Denyce Graves Foundation
Terms & Conditions
SIGN UP FOR THE LATEST NEWS AND UPDATES
DGF is rooted in the belief that now is the time to increase our nation’s commitment to its artists, both past and present—for America’s future and for the whole world. In paying homage to the achievements of so many who have gone before while serving the real needs of today’s emerging artist singers, The Denyce Graves Foundation is giving back and paying it forward at the same time.
FEBRUARY 23, 2023 8:00A.M. EST
The Denyce Graves Foundation appears on Good Morning America
Help us celebrate our 2nd Birthday by watching Robin Roberts interview Denyce Graves, Thursday morning on Good Morning America at 8:00AM EST. They will discuss the foundation and our HBCU/ Conservatory initiative Shared Voices. Featuring Shared Voices student cohorts Sophia Baete, Darius Jackson, Kevin Webb, and Hannah Jones. Kevin Webb sings live with Robin Roberts. We hope you tune in!
MARCH 18, 2023 11:00AM
Shared Voices Industry Day: Financial Planning 101 with Glen Esteban
Glen Esteban, financial advisor for 25 years, offers instruction in financial planning to our Shared Voices student cohorts in this second session of a 3-part virtual series.
MARCH 23, 2023
Shared Voices Industry Day hosted by Morgan State University, with Melissa Wegner of the Metropolitan Opera
In-person at the Murphy Fine Arts Center in Baltimore, MD
HAPPY BLACK HISTORY MONTH FROM THE DENYCE GRAVES FOUNDATION!
IN THE NEWS
The Denyce Graves Foundation's Shared Voices initiative on Good Morning America: How this program advances diversity in classical vocal arts
Learn how Grammy-winning opera singer Denyce Graves founded Shared Voices, the first initiative of the Denyce Graves Foundation...