Harry Belafonte to be appointed HCA Ambassador
On Friday Danish Minister of Culture Brian Mikkelsen will appoint Harry Belafonte as Hans Christian Andersen Ambassador at a ceremony to be held at Restaurant Grøften in Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen.
By ms - H.C. Andersen 2005 - 02 August 2004
The American entertainer, actor and producer Harry Belafonte is a living legend internationally within film and music.
On Friday, August 6, Danish Minister of Culture Brian Mikkelsen will appoint Harry Belafonte as Hans Christian Andersen Ambassador at a ceremony to be held at Restaurant Grøften in Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen.
Harry Belafonte's 60-year career as an entertainer has brought him world fame, yet so has his determined commitment to human rights issues. He has forged close ties to such icons of civil rights activism as Dr. Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela.
Alongside his drama studies in the 1940s, Harry Belafonte started out as a singer at a small jazz club in New York where he was accompanied by the then young and unexposed musicians Miles Davis, Charlie Parker and Max Roach. Accordingly, music took centre stage in Harry Belafonte's career in the years to come. He released the album Calypso in late 1955, which was the first album to sell more than one million copies. With hits such as Mary's Boy Child and Banana Boat the album triggered a worldwide calypso wave.
This success opened the doors to Hollywood, and Harry Belafonte featured in leading roles in movies such as Carmen Jones, White Man's Burden and Kansas City and appeared regularly on TV. He has since become a successful producer of several movies and Emmy-nominated TV shows.
Harry Belafonte has through the years shown outstanding commitment to human rights and humanitarian initiatives. He was appointed Cultural Advisor to the Peace Corps by President John F. Kennedy, and in 1987 he was appointed UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.
In these capacities he has initiated influential conventions and conferences of world leaders with the principal aim of improving children's living conditions in the developing world. In 1985, he initiated the project USA for Africa featuring the classic hit "We are the World". He has received numerous awards and honours.
Facts about Harry Belafonte
Harry Belafonte was born on 1 March 1927 in Harlem, New York, where he was christened Harold George Belafonte, Jr. His career as entertainer, singer, songwriter, actor and producer spans more than 60 years.
Harry Belafonte grew up in Harlem and on Jamaica where his mother was born. He is a drama graduate from Erwin Piscator's Dramatic Workshop at the School of Social Research, yet with roots in the New York jazz scene he went on to become a popular singer-entertainer. He achieved world fame with his 1955 album Calypso, which was the first album to sell more than one million copies. He has since released more than 40 albums.
In the 1960s, Harry Belafonte became the first African-American producer and was awarded an Emmy for the TV show Tonight with Harry Belafonte. He has since produced and appeared in several movie and TV productions and enjoyed great success with White Man?s Burden and Kansas City in the 1990s.
Harry Belafonte has for many years shown great commitment to humanitarian causes and has especially sought to improve the living conditions for children in developing countries. He has received numerous honours and has been appointed UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.