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ella fitz 2 - Ella Fitzgerald Music 113 Jazz in American...

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Ella Fitzgerald Music 113: Jazz in American History http://www.thcrawford.com/images/artEllaFitzgerald.jpg
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Facing the stage at the Harlem Opera house on a packed night is a nerve wrecking predicament to put yourself in, especially when you go to dance and end up singing. Ella Fitzgerald at the young age of sixteen sang her heart out on stage and opened the door to opportunities. She sang the song “The Object of My Affection” by one of her favorite singers Connee Boswell at Amateur Night at the Harlem Opera House and had the crowd screaming for more. She first went on stage because of a bet she got forced into with her current school mates. Little did she know that she was going to win the contest that night and was going to change her life forever (2). Ella Fitzgerald was daughter of William and Temperance Fitzgerald and born April 25, 1917 in Newport News, Virginia. Ella never had an easy life growing up. Her and her mother moved to Yonkers, N.Y shortly after her birth barely knowing her father at all. Overtime they moved in with Tempie's longtime boyfriend Joseph Da Silva. Ella's half-sister, Frances, was born in 1923 and she eventually began referring to Joe as her stepfather. Stepfather Joe dug ditches and was a part-time chauffeur, while Tempie worked at a laundromat and did some catering. Lead less to say they couldn’t afford much and Ella took on small jobs to contribute money to her family. They lived in an apartment where Ella made friends easily. Growing up she was a bit of a tomboy but enjoyed dancing and singing with her friends (4). She always wanted to be a dancer but enjoyed music. Her leading inspiration was singer Connee Boswell, a white girl from New Orleans who sang with here sisters, called the Boswell sisters (2) . She always wanted to get more involved in music but couldn’t afford expenses. However when she was still young on special occasions some evenings they would take the train into Harlem
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and watch various acts at the Apollo Theater (4). She always had dreams of performing at Apollo Theater. Ella was always a shy and timid girl. However once she finally got past the stage fright her voice shined through. After she had faced her fear at the Harlem Opera house, she entered almost every contest that went on there. The three songs she loved and sang every time were “Believe It, Beloved”, “The Object of My Affection” and “Judy”. Winning the amateur nights at Harlem Opera House was getting Ella to be known around in the music business. She was given a great opportunity to enter a guest appearance on a radio show for CBS. However Ella’s mother sadly died, leaving nobody legally qualified to sign the documents on her behalf. Ella was admitted to an orphanage by no choice but the authorities, setting her entertaining dreams on hold. However that didn’t stop her and
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