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Donald McKayle

  • Birthplace: New York City, New York
  • Birthday: July 06
Date of passing: 
April 06, 2018

Obituary

Obituary: 

Donald McKayle was an American choreographer.

He was best known for creating socially conscious concert works during the 1950s and '60s that focus on expressing the human condition and, more specifically, the black experience in America.

McKayle was the first African-American to both direct and choreograph major Broadway musicals, including the Tony Award-winners Raisin (1973), and Sophisticated Ladies (1981).

McKayle's work was broadcast on every major TV network from 1951 to 1985. He created the choreography for the Oscars and the Grammys, as well as for network variety shows.

Donald McKayle was an American choreographer.

He was best known for creating socially conscious concert works during the 1950s and '60s that focus on expressing the human condition and, more specifically, the black experience in America.

McKayle was the first African-American to both direct and choreograph major Broadway musicals, including the Tony Award-winners Raisin (1973), and Sophisticated Ladies (1981).

McKayle's work was broadcast on every major TV network from 1951 to 1985. He created the choreography for the Oscars and the Grammys, as well as for network variety shows.

He has also choreographed for films including Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1970), The Great White Hope (1972), and The Minstrel Man (1977), a television film for which McKayle received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination in the category of Outstanding Achievement in Choreography.

In 2005 he was honored by the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and presented with a medal as a master of African American choreography.

McKayle died April 6, 2018, in Orange, California. He was 87.

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AWARDS & NOMINATIONS

AWARDS & NOMINATIONS

1 Nomination No Emmys