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George Washington Dixon

The first white performer to
establish a wide reputation as a
"blackface" entertainer.

Thomas Dartmouth "Daddy" Rice

White actor born into a poor family
in New York's Seventh Ward. As a
blackface performer, he introduced
the "Jim Crow" character.

Virginia Minstrels

A minstrel troupe led by the white
banjo virtuoso Dan Emmett; their
show introduced more lengthy
performances featuring a
standardized group of performers.
They first appeared in 1843.

Stephen Collins Foster

Composed around two hundred
songs during the 1840s, 1850s, and
early 1860s; regarded as the first
important composer of American
popular song. He was probably the
first person in the United States to
make his living as a full-time
professional songwriter; he wrote
"Oh! Susanna," "Old Folks at
Home," "My Old Kentucky Home,
Good Night," "Jeanie with the Light

John Philip Sousa

The most popular bandleader from
the 1890s through World War I; was
known as America's "March King."
The son of a trombonist in the U.S.
Marine Band, Sousa eventually
became its conductor and later
formed a "commercial" concert
band, which toured widely in
America and Europe. He composed
popular marches such as "El
Capitan," "The Washington Post,"
and "The Stars and Stripes

Scott Joplin

African American composer and
pianist; the best-known composer of
ragtime music. Between 1895 and
1915, Joplin composed many of the
classics of the ragtime repertoire
and helped popularize the style
through his piano arrangements,
published as sheet music. Scott
Joplin's first successful piece was
"Maple Leaf Rag" (1898).

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