The Life of Camilla Williams, African American Classical Singer and Opera Diva

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This book is the memoir of an African-American operatic soprano. It is co-written
by a Nigerian ethnomusicalogist, and relates Williams’ early life, education and
subsequent career as an artist and educator. This book contains 3 color plates and seven black and white photographs.


“…the gradual amalgamation of two diverse women—one a younger Nigerian ethnomusicologist and the other an older eminent African-American prima donna…an ideal combination for the writing of Miss Williams’ memoir…”
-Prof. Elizabeth Nash,
University of Minnesota

"She seamlessly writes the narrative so that the reader feels that Williams is talking throughout the text."
-- Prof. Annessa Ann Babic,
New York Institute of Technology

"The authors' account of Williams' early life, her college experiences, her critically-acclaimed debut with the New York City Opera, her international touring career, her life as a cultural ambassador, her marriage, and her teaching career, allows the reader to share in her struggles and triumphs over eight decades. Stunning photographs from Williams' collection, along with a chronology and discography, are useful additions for researchers...a tremendous resource for music historians, African American scholars, and those interested in an historic overview of the arts in general."
-Susie Skarl, Reviewer
March 2015 issue of the Journal of American Culture,
Librarian, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Table of Contents

Introduction by Stephanie Shonekan

Foreword by Elizabeth Nash

Chapter 1 Back to the Beginning

Chapter 2 Season of Preparation

Chapter 3 A Butterfly's Metamorphosis

Chapter 4 An Uncomfortable Cocoon

Chapter 5 A Butterfly Emerges

Chapter 6 Spreading My Wings

Chapter 7 A Workin' Travelin' Girl

Chapter 8 My Life's Love

Chapter 9 The European Stage

Chapter 10 Traversing The Motherland

Chapter 11 Contributing to the Cause

Chapter 12 The World at My Feet

Chapter 13 Path to Teaching

Chapter 14 From East Coast to Mid-West

Chapter 15 Coaching Voices, Molding Minds

Chapter 16 Spotlight in my Twilight

Chapter 17 Lessons of a Lifetime

Addendum Boris' Story


Index of Names

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