Bringing the past to life with colour

Al Jolson


Al Jolson, in full stage make-up. As far as I can ascertain, this is a publicity still for “The Jazz Singer”, generally considered the first “talkie”feature film, in 1927.

Nowadays, Jolson’s act would be considered racist, and rightly so, but Jolson himself could not be described as such and, by the time he was a star, had gained a reputation for fighting racial prejudice. He continued that fight for the rest of his life.

Al Jolson
Original B&W photo.



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