Development of Musical Theater in the Black Community

In the 19th and early 20th century, Black people were portrayed as racist fictitious characters through using Black face by White actors. Plays like “Two Real Coons” were dangerous to the image of Blacks. They were so popular in America and this became the narrative for what Whites believed Black people to be. Fortunately in the mid 20th century, African American Musical Theater began to portray Blacks in a more favorable and creative light. Some of the most famous African American Musicals are: 

  • Raisin (1951)

  • Black Nativity (1962) 

  • The Wiz (1975) 

  • DreamGirls (1981