Produced on July 24, 1807, in Nyc, Ira Aldridge played together with the African Grove Theatre before migrating abroad and making his London debut. Other characters followed in the British states, and Aldridge finally became a well-known thespian in Europe, touring nations like Austria and Russia and earning the nickname “African Roscius.” He also used his celebrity to call for slavery’s end. He expired on August 7, 1867, while in Poland.
Produced on July 24, 1807, in Nyc, Ira Frederick Aldridge was the son of Lurona and Daniel Aldridge. The youthful Aldridge attended the African Free School and, in the early 1820s, started his performing career during his teens using the African Grove Theatre, also called the African Theatre. Believing that America was not a hospitable location for a black performer, yet, he determined to seek his fortune elsewhere.
Emigrating to England as a fellow performer’s valet, Aldridge could locate more creative opportunities, albeit with considerable challenges. This excellent performance, nevertheless, neglected to establish a profession for him on the London stage, using the performer facing racist rhetoric in the newspapers.
A well-regarded performer, Aldridge was known as the “African Roscius,” after the mythical Roman celebrity Quintus Roscius Gallus. Aldridge returned to London to play Othello in 1833 when he was just 26 years old, taking on the part for well-known actor Edmund Kean, who’d lately passed away. Returning to regional theatre, Aldridge continued to perform Shakespeare’s works. A few of his performances contained samples from several plays, and he was known for impersonating white characters. Five years after, Aldridge took the stage in St. Petersburg, Russia in a string of well-received shows. He spent little time in England, starting his last leading tour of Great Britain in 1859.
Aldridge continued to play before the conclusion of his life, earning several honours including Switzerland’s White Cross. He also staunchly spoke out against slavery, giving financially to abolitionist causes and featuring tunes of liberty into his performances. Ira Aldridge expired on August 7, 1867 in Lodz, Poland while touring. He’d been twice married and left behind several kids, including Luranah Aldridge, who afterwards became an opera singer of some renown. Biographies on the performer’s life incorporate a complete 2011 two volume work by Berth Lindfors.