STOGIE AMIR KENYATTA AS THE LATE GREAT PAUL ROBESON (Photos by Rossano P. Stewart)
by Genea L. Webb
For New Pittsburgh Courier
In Stogie Kenyatta’s opinion, Paul Robeson “is the most unique Black man born in America.”
That’s why the Jamaican-born, New York-bred, seasoned actor decided to create the inspiring one-man show “The World is My Home—The Life of Paul Robeson.” The production, which Kenyatta said took him about 12 weeks to write, chronicles the inspiring life story of singer, actor, athlete, lawyer and activist Paul Robeson.
The show, which has earned the number one spot on the United States and Caribbean College Circuit, was brought to Pittsburgh by T. Rashad Byrdsong, founder and CEO of the Homewood-based Community Empowerment Association earlier this month.
“I saw the performance in Chicago and it was excellent,” Byrdsong said. “Look at the courage, consistency and perseverance that Robeson had is a story untold. Robeson is someone you didn’t read about in public history books. He personifies the African-American struggle.”
The son of a runaway slave, Paul Leroy Robeson was born in 1898 in Princeton, N.J.
Although his mother died when he was five years old, Robeson’s exceptional talents were noticed by his parents early on and thus nurtured by his father. He was awarded a scholarship to Rutgers University and became an All American Football Player and Valedictorian of his class. After graduating from Rutgers, Robeson went to Columbia School of Law. He attended law school while playing in the NFL.