About

Black Acts

Creativity and Celebrity in Twentieth-Century Theater

Created by the students of “African American Theater” in the spring of 2013, this web exhibition was borne of a desire to explore different modes of writing, to make use of the amazing resources in black theater held by the Beinecke Library at Yale University, and to share those resources as a work of public scholarship. more . . .

Featured Items

Daily News Article on Canada Lee

This article attempts to create a portrait of the actor Canada Lee by describing his odd career paths. ...more

Autographed photo of Sidney Poitier

Autographed photograph of Sidney Poitier with the words "May the wind be at your back in all your undertakings. Best wishes always, Sidney Poitier" signed at the top left ...more

Post teaser

A teaser add published in the New York Post. Its text and graphic suggest the degree to which Harry Belafonte's rise to fame was regarded as anomalous. ...more

Photos of Canada Lee

Different depictions of Canada Lee as Bigger Thomas. Many of the more violent/poignant moments of the play are depicted through these images. ...more

Vienna Notice

Advance copy of a Vienna notice of the 1965 touring production of "The Amen Corner" ...more

Portrait of Zora Neale Hurston

A portrait taken of Zora Neale Hurston by Carl Van Vechten in 1935; the author sits looking out to the left side of the frame, smiling engimatically. ...more

Cotton Club Program

This Cotton Club program from a 1933 performance gives a clear depiction of the type of wealthy white theater goers that were meant to attend the Cotton Club and Ethel Waters performances. ...more

Hughes note

Congratulatory note from Langston Hughes to Harry Belafonte, following his Tony award–winning performance in Almanac. Belafonte grew up observing the curious accessibility of celebrities… ...more

Zurich Program

Zurich program for the 1965 "Amen Corner" Tour ...more

Tour Stop List

List of stops on 1965 Tour of "The Amen Corner" ...more

Recent Items

Dust Tracks on a Road typed draft sample

Typed draft with author emendations ...more

Baldwin Portrait

One of Carl Van Vechten's Portraits of James Baldwin ...more

Vienna Notice

Advance copy of a Vienna notice of the 1965 touring production of "The Amen Corner" ...more

Hamburg Program

Hamburg program for the 1965 touring production of "The Amen Corner" ...more