June 20

June 20, 1960 – Harry Belafonte Wins An Emmy

Harry Belafonte became the first African American to win an Emmy on June 20, 1960.  Belafonte is a singer, an actor, producer, songwriter and social activist. He set musical records with the highest selling album by a single artist in 1956, Calypso sold over a million albums.

Harry Belafonte Viennale2011b

Harry Belafonte at the Vienna International Film Festival 2011.

In addition to the Emmy, he has won a Tony Award, Academy Award, three Grammy Awards and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Harry Belafonte Civil Rights March 1963

Harry Belafonte at the 1963 Civil Rights March on Washington, DC

Belafonte is well known for his civil rights activism, he was a prominent fixture in civil right protests and marches and a close ally to the late Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.   He has continued his activism for various humanitarian causes into the twentieth first century.  Belafonte was born on March 1, 1927 in New York City.

Harry Belafonte being interviewed backstage during the screening “Sing Your Song” by Occupy TVNY on October 30, 2011.