Soprano Jessye Norman grew up in a family of amateur musicians who strongly believed in the importance of education. Like many African American musicians, she had to start her career in Europe before breaking through in America; her debut at the Metropolitan Opera wasn’t until 1983. Norman is a master interpreter of spirituals and a lifetime member of the Girl Scouts.
Read about her memoir "Stand Up Straight and Sing"
This post is part WXXI Classical 91.5’s celebration of Women’s History Month. For more of these stories and other resources, check out Celebrating the Contributions of Women to Classical Music.