Sing Your Song is the result of a confluence of many events, things as diverse as the passing of Marlon Brando, a look back at the lives of many other unsung heroes in the fight for justice as well as the faithful love (and gentle nagging) of two daughters. Like Brando, there are many public figures who are not known, primarily, for their activism, their compassion and their dedication to human rights. Harry Belafonte is one of them:
“Cecilia, the daughter of another silent warrior, my friend Gregory Peck, had just completed a documentary on her father’s remarkable life. Coincidental to this, was the tugging by my daughter, Gina, to document my own journey. For many years I had resisted prodding by several who felt that I should both write and film my story. The idea as an end in itself seemed too self-serving. But I was awakened to the possibilities of making such a commitment by revealing the stories that could be told of and by all those with whom I shared an unending quest for justice.”
Sing Your Song is an up close look at a great American, Harry Belafonte. A patriot to the last and a champion for worldwide human rights, Belafonte is one of the truly heroic cultural and political figures of the past 60 years. Told from Harry’s point of view, the film charts his life from a boy born in New York and raised in Jamaica, who returns to Harlem in his early teens where he discovers the American Negro Theater and the magic of performing.
From there the film follows Belafonte’s rise from the jazz and folk clubs of Greenwich Village and Harlem to his emergence as a star. However, even as a superstar, the life of a black man in 1960s America was far from easy and Belafonte was confronted with the same Jim Crow laws and prejudices that every other black man, woman and child in America was facing.
Among other things, the film presents a brief look at the Civil Rights Movement through the eyes of an insider, someone who despite his high profile, wasn’t afraid to spend time in the trenches.
From Harlem to Mississippi to Africa and South Central Los Angeles, Sing Your Song takes us on a journey through Harry Belafonte’s life, work and most of all, his conscience, as it inspires us all to action!