Dorothy Donegan Day
April 26, 1922 – May 19, 1998
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Filmed at: America’s Music Legacy concert c. 1982
Pianist Dorothy Donegan was born April 06, 1922 in Chicago, Illinois.
Like so many great musicians from that town, she attended DuSable High School were she was trained by ‘Captain’ Walter Dyett.
Widely respected by her colleagues – including Art Tatum – she was best known for her live performances.
In 1943, she became the first African American to perform at Chicago’s Orchestra Hall.
Though highly respected by fellow musicians – including Art Tatum who said of her “she’s the only woman who can make me practice” – her recorded work didn’t receive critical or popular attention until the 1980s.